Massive blast in Pakistan kills 17, scores injured

Attack on army vehicle kills 15 in SW Pakistan official

Attack on army vehicle kills 15 in SW Pakistan official

"We can now confirm that 15 people have died in the explosion today".

At least 15 people were killed and 32 others injured when a blast hit an army truck in Pakistan's southwest Balochistan province on Saturday night.

Sarfraz Bugti, the home minister for Baluchistan, said the blast took place near a private hospital but its nature is still being investigated.

The high-intensity blast occurred in a parking lot near Pishin bus stop which is in a high-security area in Quetta, said reports. The dead and injured were rushed to Civil Hospital Quetta. He said it was not immediately clear if it was a suicide blast or a remotely controlled explosive device. "Among the victims are security personnel and civilians", he said.

Other officials in the area, including the spokesman for the Balochistan government, also confirmed the toll although medical officials had earlier put the number of casualties at eight killed and 17 injured.

Two cars, four rickshaws and two motorbikes caught fire in the explosion.

In February, two bomb disposal squad members were killed and 11 others wounded in an explosion under Quetta's Saryab Bridge, local media reported.

Daesh, a Takfiri terrorist group which mainly operates in the Middle East but has also established a branch in Afghanistan, has claimed several attacks in the Pakistani territory in the recent past.

Quetta also has been a stronghold for Taliban militants who frequently cross the border and carry out attacks against security forces in both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

In May, at least 10 labourers were killed in Balochistan's Gwadar district when unidentified assailants opened fire at the construction site where they were working.