Blast inside Quetta mosque claims 14 lives, injures 20

Blast inside Quetta mosque claims 14 lives, injures 20

A blast inside a mosque in Quetta’s Satellite Town area on Friday evening claimed 14 lives and left 20 people injured, Civil Hospital Spokesperson Dr Wasim Baig confirmed.
According to Quetta Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Abdul Razzaq Cheema and hospital sources, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Amanullah and the mosque’s imam were among the deceased.
The nature of the explosion, which took place inside a mosque during Maghrib prayers in Ghousabad neighbourhood, has yet to be determined, police said.
The injured and the deceased were shifted to Quetta’s Civil Hospital while an emergency was imposed in all hospitals of the city. AFP quoted Balochistan police chief Mohsin Hassan Butt as saying that the death toll may rise as some of the wounded are in a critical condition.
Bomb disposal squad (BDS) and security personnel are searching the mosque premises for evidence and the area has been cordoned off. The mosque is located in a densely populated Pashtun-majority neighbourhood.
TV footage of the explosion’s aftermath showed debris and shattered glass strewn on the floor at the scene.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the bombing.
The incident comes nearly a month after the son of DSP Amanullah, who was martyred in today’s explosion, was shot dead.
DIG Cheema, while speaking to media, said that police had almost completed the investigation into Najeebullah’s killing. He added that they will now ascertain whether the same group was behind both the attacks.
Meanwhile, the director general of the Inter-Services Public Relations, Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, tweeted that Frontier Corps personnel had reached the blast site and were carrying out a search operation along with police. “Every possible assistance be given to police and civil administration,” the tweet quoted Army Chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa as saying, adding that “those who targeted innocents in a mosque can never be true Muslim.”

‘Terrorists will never be allowed to succeed’
Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the attack and regretted the loss of lives, DawnNewsTV reported.
Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal Khan, while condemning the incident, said that those who targeted worshippers have no religion or tribal affiliation. “They are only terrorists and deserve the harshest punishment,” he said, adding that state enemies are once again trying to create a law and order situation in Balochistan.
The chief minister said, however, that they will not let anyone destroy the hard-earned peace that had been achieved through the sacrifices of the armed forces and citizens.
Balochistan Home Minister Zia Langove also condemned the blast, saying that “terrorists were scared of Pakistan’s development”.
“Internal and external enemies are making failed efforts to create panic and unrest in the country,” he said in a statement.
Langove vowed that “defeated terrorists will never be allowed to succeed”. He expressed solidarity with the victims and said that no negligence will be tolerated in the medical treatment of the injured.
PPP chairperson Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari also condemned the blast. He expressed condolences at the loss of lives and demanded that the “planners of terrorism” in the province be brought to justice.
The incident comes three days after a motorcycle parked close to a Frontier Corps (FC) vehicle blew up in Quetta, leaving two people dead and another 14 injured. That blast, claimed by Hizbul Ahrar — an offshoot of the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), had come after a respite of some weeks in what has traditionally been a violence-prone area.
In November, at least two FC personnel were martyred and five others injured in an explosion in Quetta’s Kuchlak area. The security personnel were on routine patrol in the area when an improvised explosive device (IED) detonated.


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