Peshawar bus blast claims 18 lives, injures 43
The ill-fated vehicle was carrying government employees from Peshawar -- the capital of northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province -- to Charsadda and Mardan districts.
Peshawar’s Deputy Commissioner Zahirul Islam told reporters the bomb planted inside the vehicle, with 70 government servants and other passengers on board, exploded near the Gulbela area on the Charsadda road.
The remote-controlled device had been planted in the rear of the bus, confirmed the provincial police chief, Nasir Durrani. He put the toll at 18 dead and 43 wounded, fearing that the number of fatalities could rise.
Body parts of the victims lay scattered at the scene and the vehicle’s tail end was completely mangled as a result of the powerful explosion, said Aminullah, giving a witness account.
Police and rescue teams evacuated the casualties to hospitals in Peshawar and Charsadda, said Peshawar Commissioner Sahibzada Mohammad Anees.
The bomb disposal squad said the device contained around six to seven kilograms of explosives and had a timed device attached to it. Most of the victims belonged to Charsadda and Mardan.
President Mamnoon Hussain, meanwhile, condemned the blast, expressing deep grief over the killings. He said the perpetrators of the heinous crime would not be spared.
“The country is suffering at the hands of terrorists and extremists who are indiscriminately targetting innocent civilians,” Hussain added, pledging the fight against militancy would continue.
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