QUETTA: Two people were killed and as many injured when a bomb exploded in an oil tanker in Chaman on Wednesday.
The tanker was carrying fuel for Nato forces stationed in Afghanistan. A trader heading towards Afghanistan was burnt alive while a teenaged pedestrian died of burns in a hospital. Three passersby also received burn injuries in the incident. The device went off as the Nato supply convoy arrived at a checkpoint in Chaman which faces Spin Boldak in Afghanistan’s violence-plagued south, Colonel Asad Shahzada told AFP. The blast triggered a fire destroying thousands of litres of fuel, he added. Police and the Bomb Disposal Squad rushed to the site after the incident and took the bodies and the injured to a nearby hospital.
Law enforcement agencies cordoned off the area and mounted a manhunt for culprits. Police registered a case against unidentified people and started investigations. US-led forces in Afghanistan are hugely dependent on Pakistan for transport links, with about 80 per cent of supplies passing through Pakistan.
The bulk of equipment required by foreign troops is shipped through the Khyber tribal region, where suspected militants have carried out multiple attacks on fuel tankers. Earlier on April 25, suspected militants torched several tankers in Chakwal district. They opened fire before setting the vehicle aflame. A sub-Inspector and three constables were killed in the incident.
Published in the Express Tribune, May 13th, 2010.