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17 injured in bomb blast at open-air market in northwest Pakistan

The bomb blast occurred in Turi Bazar in the city of Parachinar when the explosives went off as people were busy buying groceries and vegetables.

SNS | New Delhi |

At least 17 people, including a child were injured after a bomb planted on a vegetable cart exploded at a busy open-air market in a tribal district in northwestern Pakistan on Thursday.

The bomb blast occurred in Turi Bazar in the city of Parachinar when the explosives went off as people were busy buying groceries and vegetables.

Parachinar District Superintendent of Police Najab Ali said the cause of the explosion was an improvised explosive device (IED) that was fitted inside a vegetable cart. The injured were rushed to the District Headquarters Hospital.

District Headquarter Hospital (DHQ) Deputy Medical Superintendent Dr Qaiser Abbas Bangash said that at least 17 injured, including a child, were brought to the facility, Dawn newspaper reported.

One injured person was in critical condition and being shifted to the Combined Military Hospital, Peshawar, the paper quoted Bangash as saying.
Earlier, authorities had said that 20 people were injured in the incident.

Parachinar is the capital city of Kurram district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Security forces have cordoned off the area and launched a search operation.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack, but the region is known for sectarian clashes between Sunnis and Shias.

Leader of the Opposition Shehbaz Sharif strongly condemned the blast, saying “terrorists seek to target citizens and leave Pakistan in the grip of terror.”

Last month, at least two Pakistan Rangers officials and a civilian were killed and three others injured in a blast in Sindh province.

On June 13, one person was killed and dozens injured in a bomb blast in Pakistan’s a busy market area in garrison city of Rawalpindi.

In 2017, nearly 132 people were killed and 460 others wounded in five militant attacks in Parachinar.

Militants had carried out 11 bomb attacks that left over 500 people dead in 2016.

(With inputs from agency)