Death Toll Climbs To At Least 70 In Pakistani Attacks

The explosion occurred in front of the office of the police chief in Quetta which is capital of mineral-rich southern Balochistan a province that is rife with separatist and Islamist insurgency

The blasts were in a market and within three minutes of each other, senior government official Wazir Khan Wazir said.

The death toll in two subsequent explosions at a densely populated area of Kurram Agency's Parachinar city has risen to 34.

Superintendent of Police Asif Ahmad said an assistant sub-inspector was among those who were killed in the attack.

Around 200 injured are still being treated and the condition of 15 is said to be critical.

Pakistan's military said late Friday it had tightened security across the country, including at the Afghan border, following the attacks.

Also on Friday, 13 people were killed in a vehicle bomb blast in the southwestern city of Quetta, a key city in Balochistan province.

Early on Friday, a suicide auto bomber killed 12 people in Quetta in the country's volatile south-west.

Baluchistan is also a main centre of Chinese-backed "Belt and Road" infrastructure and energy projects involving some $57 billion worth of investment across Pakistan.

Pakistani President Mamnoon Hussain and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the terrorist attacks and expressed deep grief and sorrow over the loss of precious lives. In the evening, two armed men on a motorcycle, with their faces covered with helmets, opened fire on police officers at a roadside restaurant in Karachi and killed four of them.

On March 31, a suicide bomber targeted civilians in the same city, killing at least 23 people and wounding 80 others.

Turi said at least 40 critically injured persons were airlifted to Peshawar in the army choppers.

A faction of the sectarian militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, known as Al Alami, claimed responsibility on Saturday for the twin blasts in Parachinar, saying it was targeting Shiite Muslims.

There are several important government offices in the vicinity of Shuhada Chowk, including the State Bank of Pakistan, the Army's China check post, the entry to the Quetta Cantonment and the residence of the provincial home minister.

Pakistan is in the middle of a widening military operation to oust militants from key areas. Special Intelligence-Based Operations (IBO) and search operations were launched in coordination with intelligence and other law enforcement agencies.

More casualties were reported in Parachinar where 50 people were killed.

At least 13 bodies were taken to hospital, along with 19 wounded people, said Wasim Baig, a spokesman for the Civil Hospital in Quetta.

Of the injured, nine are said to be policemen.



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