At least 56 people were killed in two suicide bombings in Pakistan on Friday, a national holiday to celebrate Eid Miladun Nabi.
In the first incident, a suicide bomber detonated his explosive vest near a mosque in Mastung, Balochistan, where a procession to celebrate Eid Miladun Nabi (PBUH) was due to pass after Friday prayers.
Mastung police said that the explosion ripped through a police van parked on Al-Falah Road.
The police said that soon after the attack, a large contingent of security services rushed to the spot and cordoned it off. The dead and injured were rushed to a local hospital for treatment. At least 70 people were injured in the attack, Balochistan Deputy Inspector General of Police Munir Ahmed Sheikh said.
Local administration said that the deputy superintendent of police Nawaz Gishkori was among those killed in the attack along with several police officers.
#Mastung bleeds again.Over 15 personnel lost their lives,87 injured. Also, dear DSP Nawaz Gishkori lost his life in this attack. More causality feared. Story is developing. #Balochistan #Terrorism #Daesh #LeJAl-Almi. pic.twitter.com/FVSgsyMGAH— Zahid Gishkori (@ZahidGishkori) September 29, 2023
No group has claimed responsibility for the blast. However, the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) quickly distanced themselves from the attack.
President Arif Alvi and and Caretaker Prime Minister Anwaarul Haq Kakar condemned the attacks in separate statements.
Caretaker Federal Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti, who hails from Balochistan, termed the attack a "heinous act: to target people at the Mawlid an-Nabi procession.
Strongly condemn the heinous attack in Mastung. Attacking innocent people during the Eid Milad-un-Nabi procession is a terrible act. We'll use all resources for rescue and relief operations, ensuring best medical care for the injured. We're committed to a zero-tolerance policy…— Senator Sarfraz Bugti (@PakSarfrazbugti) September 29, 2023
Meanwhile in Hangu, police said that a suicide bomber detonated his vest inside a mosque in the Doaba area where around 30 to 40 people had gathered for the Friday congregational prayers. The official added that the explosion had caused the structure to collapse killing at least four people and injuring several others.
Police said that two suicide bombers had attempted to storm the local police station with a vehicle laden with explosives. However, the police intercepted them.
One suicide bomber was gunned down at the gate of the police station while the other one managed to run into a mosque inside the police station compound where he detonated his vest. Devotees praying in the mosque fled after hearing police fire at the suicide bomber.