Islamabad, Jan 2: At least two people were killed while 29 injured in Pakistan’s Balochistan province when a pilgrims’ bus was attacked in Quetta city Wednesday evening.
“So far, there have been two deaths, while the count of the injured has risen to 31,” reported Geo TV citing Abdul Raheem, the information minister for Balochistan.
As per initial reports the target of this sectarian terrorist act was a bus full of pilgrims coming from Iran. The blast struck the bus at the city’s Akhtarabad bypass.
The bus had just entered Quetta after crossing Pakistan-Iran border carrying about 30 to 35 pilgrims who were coming back home after visiting holy places in Iran, said a police official Abdul Razzaq Cheema.
Gunshots were also fired after the bomb went off, a source said. The bus caught fire after the explosion.
After conducting initial investigation, Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) declared it was a suicide attack.
“About 80-100 kg of explosive was used in the bomb. It is surmised that a suicide-car-bomber rammed into the fateful bus and blew it up,” a BDS official said.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and President Mamnoon Hussain strongly condemned terrorist attack.
Sharif, in his condolence message, said the perpetrators of such heinous crimes were doing no service to Islam and the country. “My sympathies are with the families of the victims. I pray for the departed souls and for early recovery of those injured in the tragic incident”.
Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) leader Altaf Hussain, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan, Awami National Party chief Asfandyar Wali also decried the attack in the strongest of words.