13 injured in Quetta blast 'targeting Shariat Court judge'

A loud explosion has been heard near Al-Khair hospital on Zargoon Road, Quetta, Waqt News reported.  "Thirteen people are injured," media reported.

"Balochistan Federal Shariat Court Judge Zahoor Shawani was the target in the attack. His Anti Terrorism Force was damaged during the incident, said Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bughti. Civilians and security officials were injured in the attack.  

The driver of the police pickup truck managed to drive the damaged vehicle to the Civil Hospital of Quetta - the same facility hit in Monday's attack - to get the wounded to medical treatment.

The truck was parked outside the hospital with its mangled bonnet, blown-out wheels and blood-stained interior later on Thursday.

About 10 police officers were guarding the entrance to the hospital.

The bomb was placed on the roadside and exploded when the AFT vehicle was passing by. Area has been cordoned off, and rescue teams are taking the injured to hospital. Due to the explosion motorbike and two cars were damaged. Windows of nearby buildings were also shattered due to the intensity of the blast.

Its a busy area, where several offices and markets are located in the area. Rescue teams and security forces have reached the area.

Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti reached the spot and said, "I condemn this attack and we are working on improving the security of Quetta. Soon we will defeat these terrorists. There coward attacks will not stop us from celebrating Independence day. These terrorists take advantage of busy roads as they can drop bombs and escape the scene.” Bugti told Reuters that security at all potential targets was being beefed up around Baluchistan.

"We have already done (added security) for our schools, educational institutions and universities ... Watchtowers have also been constructed," he said.

"But obviously this new threat against hospitals has emerged - we are checking that and will beef up."

According to Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti the bombed weighed 4 kilograms.

Medical Superintendent Abdul Rehman Miankhel told reuters that 13 wounded people, including four members of the security forces, were being treated at the Civil Hospital, the same facility hit by Monday's suicide attack.

"Care must be taken that a rush not be created at the scene as the terrorists have reached the point of barbarity where they target crowds like this," the news announcer said. 

Targeted killings have become increasingly common in Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan province that has seen rising violence linked to a separatist insurgency as well as sectarian tensions and rising crime.

Few days ago, Quetta Civil Hospital had been a target which resulted in killing over 70 people, majority of them were lawyers. Today another National Action Plan meeting is being called by the Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to discuss the security conditions of Quetta, Chief of Pakistan Army Raheel. DG ISI, DG IB, Interior Minister Chaudary Nisar are part of the meeting.