PARACHINAR: 22 killed, over 60 wounded as blast rocked Parachinar’s local market on Friday, political agents reported. Several injured are suffering from critical condition and the death toll is expected to rise.
Emergency has been declared in hospitals of Parachinar and nearby areas.
Pakistan Army, rescue officials and other security forces have started recuse operation and cordoned off the area. The blast occurred near Noor Market.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the attack and expressed grief over the blast. “It is our responsibility to continue the war against terrorists,” he said.
President Mamnoon Hussain and Interior Minister Nisar also condemned the blast. Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has ordered an inquiry report of the tragedy.
Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan also condemned the attack through his twitter message.
According to the military media wing Inter Service Public Relations (ISPR), army helicopter shifted the victims to DHQ Hospital, Peshawar.
It was reported that a women’s mosque was the target of the blast which was situated in the busy area near imambargah.
Jamat-ul-Ahrar, a banned outfit, has claimed the responsibility for the attack through video message.
Shia population is apparently the target of attack.
Early this year another blast rocked Eidgah market of Parachinar which resulted in death over 21.
Parachinar is the capital of Kurram Agency and the largest city of the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Kurram Agency is significant for Shia population and is very sensitive among tribal areas. It connects with three provinces of Afghanistan and is the key route for a militant movement across the border. It faced a number of terrorism activities for several years, which decreased after Zarb-e-Azb.
Today’s Parachinar blast is the first major terrorism act after the launch of countrywide Operation Raddul Fasaasd. The operation initiated by the military and security forces of Pakistan to eliminate terrorism and remove hideouts of militants.