QUETTA: At least five people have died and while 12, including two assistant commissioners, have received injuries in a bomb blast targetting the Chinese envoy at Quetta’s Serena Hotel on Wednesday night.

The attack targetted the Chinese ambassador to Pakistan, who was reportedly staying in the hotel. Police confirmed that it was a suicide attack as the bomber detonated his vehicle laden with explosives minutes before the arrivals of the envoy.

However, the ambassador remained safe, as he was not present at the time of the blast, confirmed Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed.

The banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, in the meanwhile, has claimed responsibility for the attack. The TTP said that it planned to target a high-level meeting of the Pakistani officials taking place in the area.

According to sources in the military, at least 40-50kg explosive was planted in a vehicle to target the envoy. “The bomb attack aimed at the Chinese ambassador occurred just minutes before his arrival at the scene,” the sources added.

The dead bodies and the injured have been shifted to the Civil Hospital, Quetta. The names of the injured are Atta Ullah s/o Abdul Sattar; Raja Tahir s/o Tariq Aziz; Assistant Commissioner Bilal Shabir s/o Shabir Hussain; Assistant Commissioner Aijaz Ahmed s/o Muhamamd Sarwar; e. Shujhat Abbasi; Irfan; Abdul Hameed; Muhammad Munawar s/o Asad khan; Muzmal Khan s/o Hameed Ullah; Syed Wakeel s/o Syed Manzoor Ahmed; Khuda Bakhash; and Ghulam Qadir s/o Musa Khan.

Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry has said that the interior ministry is in contact with the Balochistan government. “The government will issue a statement on the Quetta blast after initial investigation,” he added.

Anas Mallick is an international journalist who has been working as a field reporter for 7+ years now. With a focus on diplomacy, militancy, and conflict, Mallick's expertise involve Pakistan, India, and Afghanistan. He tweets at @AnasMallick


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