Targeted attack: Bomb on van kills 7 in Peshawar outskirts

Driver alleges man boarded with bomb; 3 killed in blast in Gilgit.

Riaz Ahmad/shabbir Mir October 02, 2014


At least seven people were killed in a bomb blast on a passenger coach travelling to Parachinar on Thursday. Five people were injured in the explosion, which occurred on Kohat Road, in the jurisdiction of Badhaber police station. The attack took place as Chief Minister Pervaiz Khattak was chairing a cabinet meeting after a four-month break.

SSP operation Najeebur Rehman Bagvi said five kilogrammes of explosives were used in the blast while AIG Special Branch Shafqat Malik said the bomb had been placed under a passenger’s seat. Malik said the vehicle caught fire after the blast as the CNG cylinders and kit of the vehicle exploded. The van was travelling from Kohat bus-stand to Tall in Parachinar.

Most of the dead are from Parachinar in Kurram Agency, including Sadaf Ali, a Frontier Corps (FC) official who worked in Tall Scouts, Jamil Hussain and Imtiaz Hussain. Two bodies were burned beyond recognition.

Most of the passengers in the middle rows of the coach were killed, while those in the front and towards the back of the bus received injuries. The vehicle was reduced to a skeleton within minutes due to the blaze.

The vehicle’s driver Shahid Rehman, a resident of Parachinar, managed to jump out of the bus as it caught fire. “A man on the bus said two of his friends were waiting near the Bazid Khel stop and I agreed to pick them up. At the stop, the man left the bus and left behind a black bag. The blast took place two minutes after that,” he told The Express Tribune.

“I saw four or five people who managed to get out of the vehicle from the front and back exits,” said an eyewitness Muhammad Nawaz, who was buying vegetables from a shop near the Bazid Khel stop when the attack took place. The injured were taken to Lady Reading Hospital. A fish-seller Sabir Shah said his son Abdur Rehman was injured by shrapnel and glass from the explosion while he was at his shop near the attack site.

Parachinar in Kurram Agency is comprised largely of Shia Turi tribesmen, who have increasingly become victim to sectarian attacks. It is believed that this attack targeted the Shia community. The K-P chief minister condemned the attack and called for an inquiry into the incident. He announced compensation of Rs5 lakh each for those killed and Rs2 lakh each for injured. Speaker National Assembly Sardar Ayaz Sadiq and Deputy Speaker Murtaza Javed Abbasi also condemned the attack

Additionally, three people were killed when explosives went off in a car on the outskirts of Gilgit. The incident took place at 5.30 pm on Thursday near Alam Bridge, roughly 45 kilometers from Gilgit. The car was heading to Haramosh and four people – including women – who were injured were shifted to District Headquarters Hospital Gilgit. On Wednesday, the interior ministry warned the G-B government of possible terrorist attacks on travellers on the Karakoram Highway, advising precautions in the lead-up to Eidul Azha. Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit-Baltistan Chaudhary Barjees Tahir ordered a report into the incident, terming the attack “cowardly”. 

Published in The Express Tribune, October 3rd, 2014.


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