Attack by improvised explosive device targets police van in Quetta, capital of southwestern Balochistan province.
KARACHI, Pakistan: At least four policemen were killed and several others injured in a bomb explosion in southwestern Pakistan on Monday evening, an official said.
The blast — latest in a series of terrorist attacks on security forces — targeted a police patrolling van outside a market place located in a high-end area of Quetta, the capital of southwestern Balochistan province, Mir Zia Langov, provincial home minister, told Anadolu Agency.
The attack also left eleven others, including two police personnel, injured, he added.
City police chief Abdul Razzak Cheema told reporters that the explosion was result from an improvized explosive device planted in a motorbike parked near the security van.
Footage aired on local broadcaster Geo News showed rescuers shifting the dead and the injured to the hospital.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, however the suspicion is focusing on Baloch separatists, who have claimed responsibility for numerous attacks on security forces in the recent past.
Monday’s explosion took place a couple of days after four militants stormed a luxury hotel in southwestern port city of Gwadar on Saturday, killing five people and injuring several others, including security personnel.
Balochistan Liberation Army — a Baloch separatist group– claimed responsibility for the brazen attack in a statement to the local media. Three of the four militants were also killed in hours-long gunfight.
The large Balochistan province has been plagued by violence for over six decades, with separatists claiming it was forcibly incorporated into Pakistan at the end of British rule in 1947.–AA