JUI-F leader among three dead in Chaman blast

QUETTA: At least three people, including a leader of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F), were killed and more than a dozen others injured in an explosion that rocked Chaman area of Balochistan.

According to police officials, the bomb was an improvised explosive device (IED) planted in a motorcycle parked on the roadside near the JUI-F’s office on Chaman’s Taj Road.

JUI-F’s leader Maulana Muhammad Hanif was critically injured in the incident. He was being shifted to Quetta when he succumbed to his injuries on the way to the hospital, police officials said.

The blast occurred shattered windows in nearby buildings. Four wounded were shifted to a nearby hospital.

The dead include a 12-year-old child, while the injured were shifted to Civil Hospital Chaman, where an emergency was declared. Police said that Maulana Hanif was the intended target of the attack.

The town of Chaman is considered sensitive as it shares a border with Afghanistan. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the blast.

JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman condemned the blast and expressed his grief and condolences over the death of his party leader.

JUI-F leaders have been targeted in attacks in Balochistan in the past as well. In May 2017, JUI-F leader and former Senate deputy chairman Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri had suffered injuries in a suicide attack on his convoy in the Mastung area. At least 28 people were killed in the attack and 39 others were injured.

In 2014, Maulana Fazlur Rehman had survived a suicide attack in Quetta when he was returning after addressing a public meeting at Sadiq Shaheed Ground.

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