Khyber Agency violence: Car bomb rips through busy Jamrud market

Published: December 18, 2012

Several vehicles were destroyed in Monday’s blast in Jamrud’s bazaar . PHOTO: EXPRESS

JAMRUD: 

A massive car bomb ripped through a busy market in the Jamrud subdivision of Khyber Agency on Monday, killing at least 21 people, including women and children, and injuring dozens more.

The white car, rigged with explosives, was set off by a remote control in the middle of Jamrud Bazaar, Assistant Political Agent Jehangir Azam Wazir confirmed to The Express Tribune.

“At least 21 people, among them women and children, were killed and 64 others were wounded,” Wazir said. “Some of the bodies were mutilated beyond recognition,” he added. “Nine of the injured are said to be in critical condition.”

According to Agency Surgeon Dr Sameen Jan Shinwari, most of the injured were shifted to the Civil Hospital, Jamrud, while those with critical wounds were referred to hospitals in nearby Peshawar.

“Four women were among the dead and they were all Afghans. These women were coming from the border in a hired car, which was destroyed. These women’s Afghan passports were found in a bag,” said Shinwari.

He said a five-year-old Afghan girl accompanying the women and two six-year-old Pakistani boys were also among those killed. The bodies of the Afghan victims were collected by officials from the Afghan Consulate in Peshawar.

The Express Tribune correspondent saw pools of blood and charred bodies at the roadside. Clothes, children’s shoes and Burqas littered the site. Officials confirmed that at least 15 vehicles and 10 shops were destroyed in the blast.

Witnesses spoke of harrowing scenes after the explosion. “The white car exploded right in front of my shop. Thick, black smoke and dust enveloped the bazaar soon after,” shopkeeper Syed Rehman told The Express Tribune.

“Another car standing nearby also caught fire, killing all five people inside – all women and children,” he added. “They appeared to be Afghan nationals.”

Driver Taj Muhammad, 40, said he was entering Jamrud when he heard the explosion and saw a ball of fire.

“I rushed to the site and saw people engulfed by flames. There were pieces of human flesh and blood everywhere. I saw a little child who was injured and crying. I took this boy to hospital,” he told AFP.

“When I picked up the injured boy he looked like my son and I was really sad.”

Another witness said it was the third major blast in the Zakakhel bazaar. “Sixty-five people were killed and over 100 injured in two earlier blasts on April 29 and January 10,” said the witness, Muzamil Khan.

An official of the Bomb Disposal Squad from Khyber Rifles said the car was packed with over 20 kilogrammes of explosives.

Political Agent Mutahir Zeb played down the idea that the government office was the intended target, but said authorities were still investigating. “We are still ascertaining what procedure exactly was used to blow up the vehicle,” he said.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the blast.

The bomb attack came two days after a brazen Taliban attack on Peshawar airport and a day after militants, who had fled the airport attack, were killed in an operation by police and army commandos in a village near Peshawar. (With additional input from AFP)

Published in The Express Tribune, December 18th, 2012.

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Reader Comments (4)

  • Gha
    Dec 18, 2012 - 4:55AM

    ,I am not saying killer are muslim or non muslim. As TTP declare they did that and they said we are muslim too. But it doest not matter if they are muslim or not. For me they are just enemy. If I were solider and were in war with TTP, defiantly I will kill the enemy before they kill me. but I am sure, Tyranny and Oppression come to this land, it just be in the guise of fighting a foreign enemy. In Chicago I have seen people are doing Xmas shopping and late night parties on week end. But in Pak we are just trying to survive.if we Know our enemy and know ourrself and we can fight a hundred battles without disaster. But I am doubt we even dont know the enemy but we dont bother to investigate, We are happy as we dont need to spend time for interrogation as what will TTP says we will accept as it is. I am totally upset by seeing all that and pithiness of it make me more sad that we even not sure who is our enemy??????.The enemy is never more unnerving than when he’s invisible.
    95% says these are Talban, OK If these are Talban than kill them all. But it would be hard to kill them all as they are not living in other country where your plans go for bombarment. They hide them with civilian population. Only way to make our army separate from civilians just get off from US war on terror. This is the only way to win the war. \
    Just alienate them from civilian by saying good bye to US war on terror. I am 100% agree with Imran Kahn policy on war on terror to win. Any one has other solution???? share here..

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  • Iftikhar Khan
    Dec 18, 2012 - 7:19AM

    Getting out of war with US is just one small part of the problem. Imran fails to utter the word about bringing these Taliban to justice, which should happen regardless and independent of our involvement with US. If they are killing innocent people they should get the capital punishment. It is very lame to say that these things are happening because of our involvement with US, as intensity may go up and down but these people are active in their savagery long before 2001.Recommend

  • Yoghurt lover
    Dec 18, 2012 - 8:32AM

    @Gha who writes “I am not saying killer are muslim or non muslim. As TTP declare they did that and they said we are muslim too. But it doest not matter if they are muslim or not. For me they are just enemy.”

    While your intentions are noble, your theory is flawed.

    If Pakistanis attack and kill Afghans/Indians, do they make your enemy? If not today, then tomorrow when they attack you, would you call them your enemy then? If day after tomorrow, they again take your side to kill Indians, they are no longer your enemy?

    Your enemy is an ideology and not a bunch of people.

    People flip-flop. Ideology is the one you should attack.

    Recommend

  • indian
    Dec 18, 2012 - 10:07AM

    Muslims keep playing that no true scottsman logical fallacy.
    They want to destabilize every nation they go and create their own ghetto and start implementing their shariah of a 7th century barbarians, they are getting what they desired.

    Recommend

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