Another deadly blast kills 14 near Pak Army HQ

21 January 2014 BBC Online


At least 14 people have been killed in a suicide attack in Pakistan's Rawalpindi city, police say.
Those who died included six military personnel and eight civilians, a senior official told the BBC.
The blast happened in a crowded market near Pakistan's army headquarters.
The attack comes a day after 20 soldiers were killed in the north-west when a bomb blast struck an army convoy. Pakistan's Taliban have said they carried out both attacks.
At least 24 others were injured in Sunday's explosion.
Soldiers and paramilitary forces were planning to leave the town of Bannu, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, for Razmak in North Waziristan, when their convoy was hit by the blast.
Police say a group of soldiers had been passing on foot at the moment of Monday's explosion in Rawalpindi, located just south of the capital, Islamabad.
Rawalpindi Police Chief Akhtar Hayat Lalika told Reuters news agency that the market, 10 minutes away on foot from the army base, was in one of the most secure areas of the city. A resident was quoted by AFP news agency as saying that windows in nearby buildings were shattered in the blast.
"The intensity of the blast threw me off my chair. I rushed outside and saw smoke everywhere. I saw injured lying and screaming on the ground," shop owner Liaqat Ali said. The two most recent attacks mark a swift escalation of violence and are among the most serious assaults on the military in recent months.
Correspondents say they will refresh concerns about Pakistan's strategy for dealing with militancy, with the government keen to pursue peace talks. The BBC's Aleem Maqbool in Islamabad says at present the government strategy to deal with the Pakistan Taliban appears to many to be utterly confused.

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