QUETTA: Sixteen people were killed and dozens injured in a blast at Quetta's Hazarganji sabzi mandi on Friday morning, authorities said.DIG Quetta Abdul Razaq Cheema confirmed to the media that 16 people, including an FC official, lost their lives in the blast which was targetted at the Hazara community. Eight of the dead belonged to the Hazara community, he said. Thirty others were injured and were undergoing treatment. Four FC personnel were also among the injured, the official added.
The blast, which ripped through the Hazarganji sabzi mandi at around 7:35am, was caused by an improvised explosive device (IED) that had been hidden among the vegetables in the market, DIG Cheema informed.
Security forces cordoned off the site of the blast.
PM condemns blast, summons report
Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the blast in Hazarganji and summoned a report on the incident.
The premier expressed his grief at the loss of innocent lives, and directed the authorities to ensure the best medical treatment for the injured.
President Dr Arif Alvi condemned the blast and expressed sorrow over the loss of precious lives. In a statement, he termed it a "heinous act of terrorism which is a reminder for us as nation that few remnants of this menace are still left to be eliminated totally."Condemning the attack, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry prayed for eternal peace for the departed souls and early recovery of the injured. He said the terrorists wanted to target the process of progress and development by harming peace in the country. The valiant people of Pakistan have been boldly facing the menace of terrorism and time is not far when terrorists will be completely eliminated from the country, the minister added.
Opposition leader in the National Assembly Shehbaz Sharif prayed for the departed souls and expressed condolences to the grieving families of the victims. He said the nation and its institutions have rendered great sacrifices to eliminate terrorism from the soil.
Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari wrote on Twitter: "Condemn the terrorist attack in #Quetta. The government must stop dragging its feet & take action to counter violent extremism. Thoughts and prayers with the families of the victims."