Sunday, 28 November 2021

Quetta bomb blast leaves 20 dead, 30 injured

QUETTA: At least 20 people were killed and over 45 others were injured in a suicide attack targeting members of the minority Shia Hazara community in Quetta’s Hazarganji market on Friday.

The attack claimed the lives of nine Hazara and one Frontier Corps (FC) soldier who was deputed for the community’s security, Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Abdul Razzaq Cheema told reporters. The 10 others who lost their lives included shopkeepers, businessmen and citizens working or residing in the area. Four FC soldiers were among the injured.

DIG Cheema said the blast targeted the Hazara ethnic community.

However, Balochistan Home Minister Ziaullah Langove, who held a press conference later in the day, said that the blast was not targeting “a specific community”.

“Our guess is that no specific community was targeted. Marri Baloch and FC personnel were among those killed as well. The numbers of the Hazara community were just greater,” Langove said.

He also described the blast as a suicide attack.

Qadir Nayil, a Hazara community leader, asked the government for provision of better protection.

“Once again our people were the target and once again we will have to bury our dear ones,” he said.

“We demand more security from the government and all those involved in today’s act of terrorism should be found and punished.”

Following the explosion, a high-level meeting chaired by Balochistan Chief Minister Jam Kamal reviewed the security measures.

It was decided in the meeting that the affected families will be given immediate financial assistance and that the provincial government will bear the treatment cost of those injured.

Furthermore, it was decided that closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras will be immediately installed at the Hazarganji market and other public places. Action on terrorists’ hideouts and against their leaders will also be boosted, the caucus affirmed.

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