MASTUNG: A bomb blast targeted a campaign convoy in Mastung, killing at least 20 people including Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) leader Siraj Raisani in the second election-related attack on Friday amid tensions over ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s return ahead of July 25 elections.
Provincial authorities say that at least 40 people have been injured in the attack. Siraj Raisani is the younger brother of former chief minister Balochistan Nawab Aslam Raisani.
According to ARY News correspondent Mustafa Khan Tareen, it was a strong blast that has claimed 15 lives as of now. He said the death toll has been confirmed by Deputy Commissioner Mastung Qaim Lashari.
Raisani was critically injured in the attack and he was quickly moved to a nearby hospital in a private car. The latest reports confirmed that the BAP leader also lost his life in the attack.
Raisani’s convoy came under attack shortly after he attended a corner meeting for provincial assembly seat PB-35.
Law enforcers cordoned off the area with rescue teams kicking off operation in the area to transport the injured to nearby hospital.
Raisani is a candidate of the Balochistan Awami Party, formed earlier this year, from PB-35 constituency.
In July 2011, Raisani lost his 14-year-old son in a terrorist attack in Mastung, in which several others, including security personnel, were killed.
Earlier in the day, a bomb blast targeted the convoy of Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA) candidate Akram Khan Durrani in a Bannu this morning. He, however, escaped unhurt while four people were killed and 14 others injured in attack.
Police said former Khyber Pakhtunkhwa chief minister Akram Durrani’s cavalcade was attacked in neighborhood of the city. He remained safe while four people were killed and 14 others suffered serious wounds in the attack.
Durrani was returning after attending a rally in connection with the election campaign when he was attacked.
PM, president, senate, politicians, others condemn the dismal incident
President Mamnoon Hussain and caretaker Prime Minister Justice (retired) Nasirul Mulk have condemned the blast. They expressed deep grief and sorrow over loss of precious lives in the blast.
They directed for providing the best medical facilities to the injured.
Chairman Senate Sadiq Sanjrani has also condemned the blast.
Meanwhile, Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Muhammad Raza also condemned attack on the BAP leader and election candidate in PB-35 Siraj Raisani in Mastung.
He expressed deep grief and sorrow over death of Siraj Raisani and others in the attack.
The chief election commissioner sought report of the incident from Balochistan caretaker chief binister, provincial chief secretary and inspector general of police. He directed for ensuring security to all election candidates.
Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf Imran Khan said, “Another condemnable terrorist attack on a political gathering – this time in Mastung. Saddened to learn of Nawabzada Siraj Raisini’s shahadat in this targeted attack as well as the shahadat of 15 other innocent citizens.”
Another condemnable terrorist attack on a political gathering – this time in Mastung. Saddened to learn of Nawabzada Siraj Raisini's shahadat in this targeted attack as well as the shahadat of 15 other innocent citizens.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) July 13, 2018
PTI leader Aamir Liaquat Hussain said, “Shocked to hear about the Mastung blast. Terrorists are trying to deter the spirits of candidates campaigning for election or possibly trying to delay elections. My thoughts and prayers for Siraj Raisani and those who lost their lives. Pakistan will not bow down to these attacks.”
Shocked to hear about the #MastungBlast terrorists are trying to deter the spirits of candidates campaigning for election or possibly trying to delay elections. My thoughts and prayers for #SirajRaisani and those who lost their lives. #Pakistan will not bow down to these attacks
— Aamir Liaquat Husain (@AamirLiaquat) July 13, 2018
Chairman Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari also condemned the incident.
پاکستان پیپلز پارٹی چیئرمین بلاول بھٹو زرداری کا مستونگ میں بم دھماکے میں پانچ افراد کی شہادت پر گہرے افسوس کا اظہار
— PPP (@MediaCellPPP) July 13, 2018
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