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10 dead, 60 injured as 2 blasts rock Parachinar

10 dead, 60 injured as 2 blasts rock Parachinar”

The death toll from twin blasts in the northwestern town of Parachinar climbed to 67 Saturday, bringing the overall death toll from three separate attacks in Pakistan to 85, with several others in critical condition, officials said. Twenty-one people, including five police and four military personnel, were also wounded in the incident.

Pakistan has waged a long war with militancy, but security has markedly improved in the country since its deadliest-ever terror attack, an assault on a school in northwestern Peshawar in which Taliban gunmen left more than 150 people dead, majority children.

Hours after the attack, Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a breakaway faction of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility.

In August, last year, a suicide bomber targeted the emergency services ward at Civil Hospital, following the death of the president of the Balochistan High Court Bar Association, killing at least 70 people and leaving many wounded.

That attack prompted Pakistan to boost security around Chinese nationals and other foreigners in the province, which is already one of the most militarised regions in the country.

TV footage showed several badly damaged cars and a road littered with broken glass. Islamic State Khorasan Province, the Middle Eastern group's affiliate in Afghanistan and Pakistan, has been known to work with the myriad of Pakistani militant groups in previous attacks, including with JuA. "Investigations are going on", said Cheema.

Abdul Razzaq Cheema, director general of police in Baluchistan province, of which Quetta is capital, told Reuters the bomber had detonated a auto packed with explosives. It also released a photograph of the alleged attacker, identified as Abu Othman al-Khorasani.

Police stopped the vehicle carrying the explosives at a checkpoint, Anwar Ul Haq Kakar, the spokesman for the provincial government of Balochistan, told CNN.

Jamaat ur Ahrar and IS have jointly claimed responsibility for past attacks in Pakistan.

Jadhav, who Pakistan said had crossed into Baluchistan from neighboring Iran, was arrested in March 2016 and sentenced to death in April. It also reiterated that the proceedings against Jadhav have been shrouded "in opacity".

Baluchistan has always been the scene of a low-level insurgency by Baluch nationalists and separatists, who want a bigger share of the regional resources or outright independence, but also attacks blamed on the Pakistani Taliban and others.

Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, a sectarian Sunni extremist group, claimed the bombings in Parachinar, a majority-Shiite town.

Khan reported from Peshawar.



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