South Asia

18 killed, over 30 injured in suicide blast in Pakistan

ISLAMABAD, June 5 (Xinhua) — At least 18 people were killed and some 30 others injured in a suicide blast that hit a bakery Sunday night in Nowshera, a city some 50 kilometers east of Peshawar of northwest Pakistan, reported local Urdu TV channel Dunya.

Policemen gather around a body at a hospital in Peshawar, northwest Pakistan (Courtesy: Xinhua)

The report quoted the district coordination officer Zakaullah as saying that the blast took place at about 8:30 p.m. local time inside a bakery located on a busy road within a military area of the city.

Dozens of people were busy shopping inside the bakery when the blast happened, said the report.

Bomb disposal squad said the blast was of suicide nature and the head of the suicide bomber was later found on the spot.

Police said that the blast caused another explosion of a gas cylinder in the bakery, which triggered off a huge fire.

Police said that the attack was aimed at targeting the family members of military personnel. A senior army officer’s wife and two children were killed in the blast, they said.

Sunday night’s blast in Nowshera is the second of its kind reported in the day in the country. Earlier Sunday morning, a bomb planted inside a pickup car killed six people including a woman and two children and injured ten others in the neighboring city of Peshawar.

Local watchers believe the two blasts could be revenge taken by Pakistan Taliban or al-Qaida following the killing of a top militant leader Ilyas Kashmiri in a U.S. drone strike launched late Friday night in Pakistan’s northwest tribal area of South Waziristan which borders Afghanistan.

 

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