Islamabad — Authorities in southwestern Pakistan said Monday a suicide bombing of a truck transporting police personnel had killed at least nine and wounded 13 others.
The early morning deadly attack occurred in Sibi, a central district in the province of Baluchistan.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the violence in the natural resources-rich Pakistani province, where insurgents routinely target security forces.
Mehmood Notenzai, the district police chief, told reporters the truck was heading to Quetta, the provincial capital when a suicide bomber on a motorcycle struck it.
The injured were taken to nearby hospitals where officials described the condition of several of them as “critical” and feared the death toll could rise.
Baluchistan has long been in the grip of a low-level insurgency led by ethnic Baluch separatist groups demanding the province’s independence from Pakistan.
Militants linked to the outlawed Pakistani Taliban group are also active in the province, which shares borders with Afghanistan and Iran.
Monday’s attack came as Pakistan is hosting a meeting with the United States to discuss cooperation in countering what officials said was the “common threat of terrorism” facing the two countries.
The Pakistani foreign ministry said that Christopher Landberg, the U.S. State Department’s acting coordinator for counterterrorism, is leading the U.S. interagency delegation in the talks in the capital, Islamabad.
“The two-day dialogue will provide an opportunity for both sides to exchange views and share their experiences and best practices in the domain of counterterrorism,” the statement added.
The talks come against the backdrop of the resurgence in terrorist attacks in Pakistan since the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021.
Source: Voice of America