Pakistan, Quetta bomb blast: A blast killed at least 23 people in Pakistan’s western city of Quetta on Wednesday. As per news agency Reuters, the blast targeted a police van. Pakistani news channel Geo TV put the death toll at 18, while Samaa TV put it at 20, adding that a “suicide attacker” was responsible for the blast. The blast comes on a day Pakistan is holding its national elections.
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The blast took place outside a polling station in the city. Those killed also included five policemen, and nearly 30 others were also injured in the attack. As per some news reports in Pakistani media, the attack was part of a larger pattern of attacks targeting security forces vehicles and not targeting the electoral process. A report by GEO News said that the suicide bomber wanted to enter the polling station. The Pakistani media further reported that the bomber attacked the convoy of DIG Abdul Razzak Cheema. However, he escaped safe in the attack.
This wasn’t the only incident of violence in the country. In Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa’s Swabi district, supporters of two rival parties exchanged fire outside a polling station, killing a worker of former cricketer Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) and injuring two others, police said.