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Agencies
February 18, 2020

Quetta bomb blast claims eight lives, injures 23

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Agencies
February 18, 2020

QUETTA: At least 10 people including two police officers were martyred and several others wounded in a suicide blast on Monday here, officials said. The suicide attack took place in Quetta, senior police official Abdul Razzaq Cheema said. The young suicide bomber was trying to enter a religious rally but police intercepted him at a security barrier.

"As police were searching him, he detonated his vest, resulting in the killing of eight people including two policemen, while injuring 23 others," Cheema said. The toll was confirmed by a local hospital spokesman Mohammad Waseem Baig. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the blast.

The attack came the same day UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres -- who is in Pakistan on a three-day visit -- praised the nation’s improved security situation.

Balochistan is key to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, part of Beijing’s regional Belt and Road infrastructure initiative. The corridor seeks to connect China’s western province of Xinjiang with Gwadar, giving Beijing access to the Arabian Sea.

Meanwhile, President Dr Arif Alvi and Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday in their separate statements strongly condemned the blast that took place in Quetta which claimed innocent lives.

The president expressed grief over the loss of life in the tragic incident and prayed for peace of the departed souls, a President House press release said. He also prayed for early recovery of those injured.

Prime Minister Imran Khan also expressed grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives in the coward incident. The prime minister instructed best medical treatment facilities to injure of the blast.