Pakistan suicide attack kills minister
- Published: 22/12/2012 at 10:46 PM
- Online news:
A suicide bomber killed a provincial minister and seven other people in an attack on a political meeting in northwest Pakistan on Saturday, officials said.
Awami National Party activists march in Mingora, in the Swat valley. A suicide bomber killed a provincial minister and seven other people in an attack on a political meeting in northwest Pakistan on Saturday, officials said
The bomber struck when the top provincial leadership of the Awami National Party had gathered at a meeting in the city of Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
"I can confirm that the senior minister Bashir Bilour is dead. He was very critical when brought to hospital and could not survive," Arbab Ayub Jan, a minister in the provincial cabinet of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, told AFP.
A notice on the information board of Peshawar's Lady Reading Hospital also announced Bilour and seven others were dead. It said 18 people were injured in the attack.
Bilour had "wounds to the chest and stomach. We tried our best to save his life" but he died during surgery, Arshad Javed, a senior doctor at the hospital told AFP.
The bomb disposal experts said that the suicide bomber detonated his explosives when the meeting was at its peak.
"The suicide bomber walked into the house where the meeting was taking place and detonated his vest," Shafqat Malik, chief of the bomb disposal squad, told AFP.
Police said around 100 people had gathered for the meeting when the suicide bomber blew himself up.
"The bomber reached very close to the senior minister Bilour," Asif Iqbal, a senior police official, told AFP.
He said the dead also include the secretary of Bilour and a policeman besides the workers of ANP. Four policemen were also among injured.
Peshawar is vulnerable to bomb blasts and Taliban attacks as it runs into the semi-autonomous tribal belt, considered a safe haven for Taliban, Al-Qaeda and other insurgents fighting both in Pakistan and across the border in Afghanistan.
Pakistan says 35,000 people have been killed as a result of terrorism since the 9/11 attacks and the 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan.
About the author
- Writer: AFP
Position: News agency