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At Least 15 People Killed in Northwestern Pakistan Blast

At Least 15 People Killed in Northwestern Pakistan Blast

A bomb exploded near a crowded market in the Pakistani city of Quetta on Saturday, killing at least 15 people, officials said, the latest attack to hit the restive southwestern province of Baluchistan.

The blast came two days before Pakistan's 70th Independence Day, and the military chief said it was an effort to mar celebrations. "Our resolve won't succumb to any challenge", Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor tweeted.

According to ISPR, an army truck was the main target of the terrorists.

"Investigations are continuing but I can confirm it was a big explosion and there are around two dozen injured who are being shifted to nearby hospitals", Bugti said.

Eight soldiers were among 17 killed in the blast and 10 soldiers were also said to be injured. Reportedly, vehicles in the immediate vicinity caught fire and over ten water tenders are on the site.

The death toll is feared to go up as some of those injured are said to be in critical condition. "At least 32 others are wounded", Bugti told a local TV station.

Balochistan Home Minister Sarfraz Bugti said that it was a huge explosion that targeted a vehicle of security forces but would be premature to comment on the nature of the explosion.

Casualties were also confirmed by rescue and hospital sources.

Kakar further reported that the blast took place near a hospital.

The high intensity blast occurred in a parking lot near Pishin bus stop which is in a high security area in the provincial capital Quetta. The military's media wing, the ISPR, confirmed 15 shaheed, including seven civilians, and 25 injured, among them 15 civilians.

A fire broke out in the parked vehicles following the blast. Rescue services and security forces have reached the site and are conducting rescue activities.