The death toll in the suicide attack in Quetta on Wednesday morning rose to three as a woman succumbed to her injuries, while 27 people, including 23 cops, were reportedly wounded.
A policeman and a child were killed when a suicide bomber targeted a police truck in Baleli area. According to police, the woman who sustained injuries in the attack, died at hospital.
The law enforcement agency said police and rescue teams rushed to the site of the explosion as soon as the incident was reported. Assistance from the bomb disposal squad was also sought.
Earlier, Quetta Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Ghulam Azfar Mahesar confirmed during media talk that the suicide bomber targeted the truck.
He said that the blast was so powerful that the truck overturned and fell into a ravine. An official was crushed to death under the truck, he added.
The condition of two policemen was serious, he continued.
The DIG claimed that the remains of the attacker have been found from the crime scene.
He said that three vehicles were hit in the blast — the police truck, a Suzuki Mehran and a Toyota Corolla.
“Looking at the crime scene and given that the truck toppled, it is estimated that 25 kilograms of explosives were used [in the blast],” DIG Mahesar added.
He said that the wounded have been moved to the Civil Hospital, Quetta.
The truck was carrying the police personnel deployed for the security of polio workers for the ongoing drive.
TTP CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY: The banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Today’s blast comes a day after the militant group called off its ceasefire with the government and asked its combatants to carry out attacks across the country.
Earlier, Quetta Senior Superintendent of Police (Operations) Abdul Haq Umrani said that the blast site has been cordoned off and an investigation has begun.
PM, PRESIDENT CONDEMN ATTACK: Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif and President Arif Alvi condemned the terrorist attack in separate statements.
PM Shehbaz Sharif ordered an immediate probe into the matter and issued directives for the provision of the best medical assistance to the injured.
“Polio workers are performing their duties to eradicate this disease [polio] without fearing for their lives. Complete eradication of polio is among the first priorities of the government,” PM Shehbaz said.
He further stated that the evil elements will keep failing in stopping the polio eradication campaign as the Pakistani nation and LEAs will not let their efforts become successful.
Meanwhile, President Alvi expressed grief over the loss of lives.
“Children are our valuable national asset and future. We are determined to keep the children safe from a disease like polio,” he said, while pledging to continue the polio eradication efforts till it is completely wiped off from the country.
The president also paid tribute to the police and polio workers and prayed for the forgiveness of the deceased and recovery of the injured.
IMRAN GRIEVED: Former premier and PTI chief Imran Khan also expressed deep grief on the attack and prayed for the speedy recovery of the injured people.
CM BIZENJO CONDEMNS ATTACK: Meanwhile, Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, in a statement, condemned the attack and instructed authorities to provide the injured best treatment facilities.
He also promised that such “cowardly acts” would not dampen Balochistan’s determination to establish peace. “All the elements involved in the incident will be arrested and punished,” Bizenjo said.
IGP CALLS IT COWARDLY ATTACK: Balochistan Inspector General Abdul Khaliq Sheikh said that the “terrorists launched a cowardly attack on the police force.”
He said that such attacks would not lower the police’s morale.
“Protecting people’s lives and property is our job. Our morale high and our determination is strong,” the IGP said.
SANAULLAH CONDEMNS: Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah, while condemning the attack, shared that the he has summoned a report of the incident from the Balochistan government.
The security czar of the country said that target of the blast was the police party.