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Death toll in Peshawar rally attack climbs to 21

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PESHAWAR, Pakistan: The death toll in the Peshawar rally attack, which claimed the life of Awami National Party (ANP) leader Barrister Haroon Bilour, has increased to 21, international media house TRT World reported Wednesday morning.

It was also reported that further 65 people have been injured in the suicide attack and are seeking treatment at Lady Reading Hospital Peshawar.

21 dead, 65 injured in the suicide attack

The explosion that took place in Yaka Toot area of the city and it was initially reported that the attack took away 12 lives and  left 25 others injured. At least five wounded persons were said to be in critical condition at Peshawar’s Lady Reading Hospital.

It was a suicide blast, confirms Bomb Disposal Squad

The Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) confirmed that it was a suicide blast.

According to reports, the explosion occurred as soon as Haroon arrived at the stage to address his supporters and party workers. He was contesting the election from PK-78 Peshawar.

Haroon was son of Bashir Ahmed Bilour, a senior ANP figure who was himself martyred in a suicide blast in Peshawar in 2012.

Although the crictically injured Haroon was taken to the hospital almost immediately after the blast, he could not survive and succumbed to his wounds shortly afterwards.

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Barrister Haroon Bilour was martyred in the suicide attack.

Chief Election Commissioner bashes security institutions over weak provision of security

Condemning the terrorist attack, Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Mohammad Raza termed it a “weakness of security institutions.”

It was a “weakness of security institutions.”

He said that the attack was a conspiracy to against transparent elections, noting that the provincial governments were ordered to provide fool-proof security to all candidates.

Imran Khan, Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari, Shehbaz Sharif, others condemn the attack

Caretaker Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk and heads of various political parties denounced the attack on ANP corner meeting.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan has expressed sorrow over the deaths of Haroon Bilour and other ANP workers. In his message on Twitter, Khan condemned the terrorist attack on ANP corner meeting.

Imran, Shehbaz, Bhutto, others condemn the suicide attack, call for better provision of security.

He tweeted, “Sad to learn of Haroon Bilour and 2 other ANP workers deaths and strongly condemn the terrorist attack at the ANP corner mtg in Peshawar. All political parties and their candidates must be provided proper security during their election campaigns by the State.

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari expressed sorrow over the martyrdom of Haroon Bilour. He said it was becoming clear as to who terrorists wanted out of the election race.

“The terror attack on pro-democracy individuals is a conspiracy,” Bilawal said, adding that they shared grief of the Bilour family. “The nation should be aware of the fact as to what do terrorists wish,” the PPP chairman added.

“The terror attack on pro-democracy individuals is a conspiracy,” – Bilwal Bhutto-Zardari.

Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) President Shehbaz Sharif also condemned the suicide attack. He tweeted, “Shocking news from Peshawar: Grieved to learn about shahadat of Haroon Bilour. Strongly condemn this barbaric act of terrorism on a public meeting. Its govt & ECP’s responsibility 2 provide fool-proof security 2 political parties leaders. My condolences to bereaved families & ANP,” and “Bilour family has suffered the worst terrorist violence & rendered sacrifices for Pakistan. Basheer Bilour Shaheed was a brave leader who was martyred 6 years ago. Son of Haroon Bilour is reported to be critically injured along with others. Pray for his & others’ early recovery.”

 

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