Islamabad: A total of 116 people were killed and over 270 injured in six bomb attacks in the restive Pakistani provinces of Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on Thursday, marking a sharp spurt in terrorist violence ahead of the country's next general election. READ MORE: UN chief condemns Pakistan bombings (Agencies)
Terrorists targeted a security forces vehicle and a Shia-majority neighbourhood in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan, and a religious congregation in the Swat Valley of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, an erstwhile stronghold of the Taliban.
Sixty-nine people were killed and over 160 injured in the worst attacks, which occurred late in the evening at Alamdar Road and Airport Road in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan.
A suicide bomber blew himself up inside a snooker club on Alamdar Road, which has two Shia prayer halls and a sizeable population of Shia Hazaras.
As media teams and security forces gathered in the area, three more bombs went off within minutes of each other, media reports said. Cameraman Imran Sheikh and reporter Saif-ur-Rehman of Samaa TV channel, two police officers and several rescue workers were among the dead.
Several reporters, cameramen and technicians of news channels were injured.
The first attack of the day also occurred in Quetta, where a powerful bomb went off under a security forces vehicle at the busy Bacha Khan Chowk this afternoon.
Twelve people were killed and over 40 others injured.
The blast was heard from several kilometres away. The roundabout, located near several markets, was crowded at the time of the explosion.
Officials at a nearby hospital said two children and a Frontier Corps personnel were among the dead. Several children and security personnel were wounded.
Police said the blast was caused by a timed explosive device planted under the security forces vehicle. An estimated 20 kg of explosives was used in the attack. The blast caused a large crater and destroyed about 10 cars.
Hours later, over 30 people were killed and nearly 70 injured in an explosion at a "tablighi markaz" (preaching centre) near Mingora, the main town in Swat Valley, this evening.
Islamabad: A total of 116 people were killed and over 270 injured in six bomb attacks in the restive Pakistani provinces of Balochistan and Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa on Thursday, marking a sharp spurt in terrorist violence ahead of the country's next general election.
READ MORE: UN chief condemns Pakistan bombings