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8 killed in Pakistan blast in Balochistan

Officials suspect blast was act of suicide bomber, though no groups have yet claimed the attack

Aamir Latif   | 17.02.2020
8 killed in Pakistan blast in Balochistan FILE PHOTO

KARACHI, Pakistan

At least eight people were killed and over a dozen injured in a suspected suicide bombing in southwest Pakistan on Monday, an official confirmed.

The blast, which occurred on a busy street of Quetta, was the latest in a recent string of attacks in the capital of southwestern Balochistan province.

Provincial Interior Minister Mir Zia Langov told Anadolu Agency that the incident took place as security forces tried to intercept a motorcycle in the city center.

He said authorities were investigating whether the explosive was planted on the vehicle, or worn by the rider in a bomb-vest.

Some 15 people were also injured, apart from several vehicles with varying degrees of damage, he added.

None have so far claimed the attack.

Live images broadcast by local Geo News network showed broken windows, charred wreckages of damaged vehicles and other belongings scattered across the scene.

Health officials fear a rise in the death toll as some injured were reported to be in critical condition.

The Balochistan province, which covers 42% of Pakistan's territory, has been beset by violence for over six decades.

Some 14 people, including a senior police official, were killed in an explosion that took place inside a religious seminary in Quetta last month.

Besides being rich in resources including natural gas, Balochistan is a key route to the $64-billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), which aims to connect China's northwestern Xinjiang province to the port of Gwadar through a network of infrastructure.

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