Deadly twin blasts hit court in Pak­istan

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Worldwide -

AT least 12 peo­ple were killed and 40 wounded when two bomb blasts went off at a dis­trict court in north­west­ern Pak­istan, of­fi­cials said.

A sui­cide bomber threw a hand grenade at po­lice guards be­fore storm­ing into the com­pound and blow­ing him­self up in the court in Mar­dan town in Khy­ber-Pakhtunkhwa prov­ince.

“So far we have re­cov­ered 12 bod­ies of the lawyers, po­lice per­son­nel and civil­ians. Be­sides this, we res­cued 52 in­jured, in­clud­ing lawyers, po­lice per­son­nel and civil­ians, from the spot,” Haris Habib, chief res­cue of­fi­cer in the city of Mar­dan in Khy­ber Pakhtunkhwa prov­ince, where the blasts took place, said.

Ear­lier, four sui­cide bombers who were try­ing to at­tack a Chris­tian colony were killed dur­ing a gun­fight with se­cu­rity forces out­side the north-western city of Peshawar, the army said.

Sol­diers backed by army he­li­copters fought back the fight­ers who had tried to at­tack the colony near Warsak Dam, just north of Peshawar.

Asim Ba­jwa, an army spokesman, said “all four sui­cide bombers were killed” in the oper­a­tion car­ried out against the fight­ers yes­ter­day and that a clear­ance oper­a­tion was un­der way.

Lo­cal sources, though, said that at least one civil­ian was killed and sev­eral wounded in the at­tack.

Two of the four sui­cide bombers det­o­nated their vests and the other two were shot dead, the sources said.

Pak­istani Tal­iban fac­tion Ja­maat-ur-Ahrar claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for the at­tacks.

The group’s spokesman, Eh­san­ul­lah Eh­san, promised more at­tacks in a state­ment re­leased to me­dia.

“We ap­peal to civil­ians to re­main away from law en­force­ment in­stal­la­tions and th­ese un-Is­lamic courts. We will tar­get them more,” he said.

Al Jazeera’s Ka­mal Hy­der, re­port­ing from Is­lam­abad, said de­spite army claims to have lim­ited the num­ber of at­tacks, armed groups still man­aged to op­er­ate across the coun­try. — AFP

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