22 killed, 50 injured in blast in northwest Pak

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22 killed, 50 injured in blast in northwest Pak

(Eds: updating with increased toll and fresh inputs) Peshawar, Mar 31 (PTI) At least 22 people were killed and 50 others injured today in a suicide blast outside a Shiite imambargah at a busy market in Pakistan’s restive northwest tribal region.

The bomber driving a car blew himself up near the main gate of the imambargah in the central bazar of Parachinar, Kurram Agency.

At least 22 people were killed and 50 others wounded in the blast, Dawn News reported, citing hospital sources. Women and a child were among the dead.

The condition of the majority of those injured was stated to be critical. Scores of vehicles were also damaged in the blast.

No one has claimed responsibility for the bombing.

Security forces cordoned off the area while emergency services were dispatched to the site.

The administration has declared an emergency at all hospitals in the area.

An Army medical evacuation helicopter has also been flown to Parachinar for evacuation of the injured, an Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) statement said.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif expressed grief over the blast and condemned the attack. “It is our responsibility to continue the war against terrorists,” he said.

Sharif reiterated his government’s resolve to eliminate the menace of terrorism from the country at all costs.

“The network of terrorists has already been broken and it is our national duty to continue this war until the complete annihilation of the scourge of terrorism from our soil,” he said.

The Prime Minister directed the relevant authorities to extend all possible assistance to the local administration.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar ordered an inquiry into the blast.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.