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Taliban faction claims hand in twin blasts in Pakistan court

Local police informed that the attacker detonated a hand grenade before exploding his suicide vest. (Representative Image) Photograph: (AFP)

Reuters Mardan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan Sep 02, 2016, 06.36 AM (IST)
At least 12 people, including policemen and lawyers, were killed and 52 wounded as two bombs exploded outside a district court complex in Pakistan's northwest city of Mardan on Friday.

The twin blasts occurred just hours after a terror attack on a Christian neighbourhood killed two people in Peshawar, also in the northwest of Pakistan.

Jamaat-ur-Ahrar, a notorious Pakistani Taliban splinter group, has claimed responsibility for both the attacks. The outlawed group told Reuters that they aim to carry out more such attacks in future.

"First there was a small blast followed by a big blast," said Haris Habib, chief rescue officer in the city of Mardan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.

Earlier in the day, four suicide bombers attacked a Christian neighbourhood in the Khyber tribal region killing one person.

Local police informed that the attacker detonated a hand grenade before exploding his suicide vest.

An emergency has been imposed at hospitals in the area.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the latest attacks. "These receding elements are showing frustration by attacking our soft targets. They shall not get space to hide in Pakistan." 

The attacks come a day after Pakistani military had said they had managed to thwart multiple terror attacks on their soil.

Director-General (DG) Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Asim Bajwa had on Thursday given a rundown of progress made against militants in the country's northwestern region in Operation Zarb-i-Azb launched in June 2014.

He informed that 3,500 terrorists had been eliminated as part of Operation Zarb-i-Azb, while 537 personnel had been martyred, including 18 officers, 35 junior commissioned officers and 484 soldiers.

(WION with inputs from agencies)
 

 

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