At least two people were killed and 20 more were injured by a bomb explosion in Quetta in western Pakistan. The explosion was reportedly targeted at a vehicle carrying a judge of an anti-terrorism court and a senior police official, both of whom escaped unhurt.
Judge Nazeer Ahmed Langove and the police official, Shafqat Janjua, were passing through a neighborhood when the explosion, which was reportedly triggered by remote control, took place. The bomb also damaged other vehicles and shops nearby, Dunya News, a local publication, reported citing an initial report on the incident. One child was among the dead, according to a report from the Express Tribune, which added that local police have detained 70 people for questioning. No group has yet taken responsibility for the blast.
Two of Langove’s guards were among those injured in the blast and were taken to the Civil Hospital in Quetta. The Balochistan Bar Association called for a strike in the region after condemning the attack, according to Dawn, a local newspaper.
Quetta, which is the capital of Balochistan province, has been witnessing a revival of a separatist conflict since 2004, Dawn reported.
Nearly 110 pounds of explosive material was used in the blast, Aitzaz Hussain, senior superintendent of police operations, said, according to Dunya News. Officials are reportedly investigating the case further.
On Sunday, another blast took place outside the house of Haji Fazl Ilahi, a lawmaker from Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf party led by Imran Khan, a cricketer-turned-politician who has spurred nationwide protests demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. The blast injured Ilahi's daughter.
Pakistan's north and west have witnessed an increasing number of attacks since its army launched an offensive against militancy in June, displacing over half a million people. And, according to Dawn, the Islamic State group is increasingly making its presence felt in the country.