128 people have died today from a suicide bombing in Pakistan and almost as many were injured. It took place at an election rally:
BLOOMBERG – A suicide bomber killed at least 128 people on Friday in the worst attack in Pakistan since a 2014 school massacre as the country witnesses a spate of violence ahead of a tense July 25 national election.
More than 120 others were also injured after at an election rally in northwestern Mastung in the restive province of Balochistan, regional officials told Bloomberg News. Interim Balochistan Home Minister Agha Umer Bangalzai confirmed the casualty figures in a post on Twitter. “Suicide bomber loaded with 8 Kg explosives material caused this much devastation,” he said.
This is the third major attack to take place that has targeted politicians in the South Asian nation this week. Balochistan Awami Party leader Siraj Raisani was killed in the Mastung blast, while Haroon Bilour, a key leader of the Awami National Party, was murdered in a suicide bombing in the northwestern city of Peshawar. Akram Khan Durrani of the Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal escaped a blast in northern Bannu on Friday.
Beset by widespread violence in previous election campaigns, up until this week Pakistan had been spared from major attacks ahead of the ballot. The armed forces have beefed up security in recent years and Friday’s bombing was the worst in the country since the Pakistani Taliban killed 148 people at an army-run school in the northern city of Peshawar in December 2014.
That’s a lot of people dead after one suicide bombing, and my guess is the death toll will continue to increase with so many people injured.
Just fyi, 8 Kg of explosives = about 17.5 pounds, That should give you some idea of what they were dealing with. To be honest, I don’t know in a practical sense how big of a boom that could cause, but given the death toll and number of wounded it sounds pretty huge.
According to the video above, ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.
Here’s more info on the blast from earlier. Apparently this a secular candidate who was targeted: