At least 7 injured in suicide attack in southwestern Pakistan
Islamabad, May 19 (EFE).- At least seven members of a religious political party were wounded in an attack on a rally of the group in Zhob area of Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province on Friday, official sources said.
“As per initial investigation, it was a suicide attack in which 7 people have been wounded,” Muhammed Ramzan, a police official at the Quetta police control room, told EFE.
The caravan of Siraj-ul-Haq, head of the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) party, was the target of the attack as the assailant blew himself up as the rally was moving from Quetta to Zhob, the party’s spokesperson Faisal Sharif said in a video message.
“Everybody was safe in the suicide attack and there was no loss of lives. According to initial information, only some cars have been damaged and a few people have sustained injuries,” added the spokesperson.
JI tweeted that Haq — who was visiting the area to address a political gathering — was safe and that the attacker had been killed.
“The suicide bomber blew himself up near Siraj-ul-Haq’s car,” JI tweeted, adding that four of the seven workers were in a critical condition.
Video footage released by the party showed a group of people surrounded a slowly moving vehicle when a blast struck.
Balochistan Chief Minister Abdul Quddus Bizenjo expressed grief over the suicide blast.
“We are grateful to Allah who protected the emir of JI and his colleagues,” the chief minister said in a statement.
No group has claimed the attack yet.
Balochistan has witnessed a prolonged insurgency with Baloch militants taking up arms in their demand for an autonomous region, independent of influence from the government at Islamabad, which they accuse of unfairly exploiting its natural resources. EFE