At least 39 killed in Pakistan bombings
At least 39 people have been killed after two suicide attackers targeted a military convoy in a high-security area of Lahore, in the second attack on the Pakistani city this week.
The two bombers, each carrying around 12 kilograms of explosives, approached their targets on foot and detonated their bombs within 15 to 20 seconds of each other, Punjab Law Minister Rana Sana Ullah said on local television.
At least five Pakistani soldiers were killed, he said.
At least 95 other people were injured in the attack, according to local police.
The attack happened in the contonment area of eastern Lahore, which is the site of military buildings, facilities and soldiers’ residential homes.
The blasts ripped through a busy market area in the vicinity of the security area which was crowded with people just before the start of Friday prayers, according to CNN affiliate Geo TV.
It is the second attack on military personnel in Lahore this week.
On Monday, the Taliban claimed responsibility for a suicide blast that killed 13 people in an affluent part of Model Town.
The attacker targeted the Special Investigation Agency, a provincial law-enforcement agency that investigates high-value detainees.
Seven of the dead were security personnel, and two were a mother and daughter on their way to school, Lahore government official Khalid Ranjha said.
Azam Tariq, spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, said the attack was in response to U.S. aggression against Muslims around the world.
On Wednesday, World Vision temporarily suspended its operations in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province after an attack on its office killed six employees.
Gunmen threw grenades and opened fire on the staff inside the humanitarian agency’s compound before detonating a homemade bomb, according to a World Vision statement.
The violence comes amid a Pakistani crackdown on militants that has resulted in the arrests of top Taliban operatives.