Quetta terror attack kills 59, injures 116 in Pakistan

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Quetta terror attack kills 59, injures 116 in Pakistan
A Pakistani volunteer and a police officer rush an injured person to a hospital in Quetta, Pakistan, Monday, Oct. 24, 2016. (AP Photo)

Quetta - Talking to the media, Balochistan Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti said that the operation against the terrorists has been completed by security forces who fought valiantly against the terrorists, Geo Tv reported.

By IANS

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Published: Tue 25 Oct 2016, 7:01 AM

Last updated: Wed 26 Oct 2016, 9:20 AM

Militant group Daesh on Tuesday claimed responsibility for an attack on a police academy in the Pakistani city of Quetta, in which masked gunmen killed at least 59 people and wounded more than 100. 
The attack was carried out by "Daesh fighters", the group's Amaq news agency said.
Talking to the media, Balochistan Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti said that the operation against the terrorists has been completed by security forces who fought valiantly against the terrorists, Geo TV reported.

Bugti said that nearly 700 police recruits were present at the time of the attack.
"There were three terrorists and all of them were wearing suicide vests," Dawn news quoted Major General Sher Afgan.
"Two suicide attackers blew themselves up, which resulted in casualties, while the third one was shot dead by our troops," he added.
Read: Timeline of deadliest insurgent attacks in Pakistan 
He also informed the press that the attackers were getting directions from Afghanistan and the initial investigation suggests that the terrorists were affiliated with Lashkar-e- Jhangvi Al Almi.
The attack began around 9.30 pm on Monday, as two attackers reportedly entered the complex through the front gate after shooting the guard, while others climbed the rear wall of the training centre.
Three loud explosions were also heard, which occurred inside the training centre.
Police and army personnel have surrounded the vicinity in large numbers as the operation is continuing inside the premises.
An emergency had been declared at hospitals around the provincial capital.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but one of the top military commanders in Baluchistan, General Sher Afgun, told media that calls intercepted between the attackers and their handlers suggested they were from the sectarian Sunni militant group, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ).
"We came to know from the communication intercepts that there were three militants who were getting instructions from Afghanistan," Afgun told media, adding that the Al Alami cell of LeJ was behind the attack.
LeJ, whose roots are in the heartland Punjab province, has a history of carrying out sectarian attacks in Baluchistan, particularly against the minority Hazara Shias. Pakistan has previously acussed LeJ of colluding with al Qaeda.
Authorities launched a crackdown against Lashkar-e-Jhangvi last year, particularly in Punjab province. In a major blow to the organisation, Malik Ishaq, the group's leader, was killed in July 2015 alongside 13 other members of the central leadership in what police say was a failed escape attempt.
A home ministry official said it was unclear what motive the group would have in attacking the police academy.

Well-coordinated attack
Monday night's assault was the deadliest in Pakistan since a suicide bomber killed 70 people in an attack on mourners gathered at a hospital in Quetta in August.
The bomber struck as a crowd of mostly lawyers and journalists crammed into the emergency ward of the hospital to accompany the body of a prominent lawyer who had been shot and killed in the city earlier in the day.
Monday night's attack also appeared well coordinated, with senior law enforcement agencies saying that assailants had fired at the police training centre from five different points.
Later, the attackers entered the centre's hostel where around 200 to 250 police recruits were resting, security officials said. At least three explosions were reported at the scene by local media.
Quetta has long been regarded as a base for the Afghan Taliban, whose leadership has regularly held meetings there.
The Afghan Taleban's new leader Haibatullah Akhundzada openly taught and preached at a mosque outside Quetta for 15 years, until May this year. Akhundzada's predecessor Mullah Akhtar Mansour was killed by a US drone strike while travelling to Quetta from the border.
Baluchistan province is no stranger to violence, with separatist fighters launching regular attacks on security forces for nearly a decade and the military striking back.
 


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