A suicide car bomb killed at least 11 people and injured 19 others in the city of Quetta (Balochistan province) on Thursday, June 23. The blast occurred at around 08:45 (local time), after a car approaching a police checkpost was stopped by security personnel. The checkpoint was located near a complex housing the inspector general of police, which may have been the primary target. Although the typical modus operandi generally consists in one suicide car bomber breaching a targeted site and other militants entering the site and opening fire on military forces, no other militants were spotted at the scene and there was no exchange of fire.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack. Balochistan is home to the Taliban along with various other militant Islamist groups.
The Quetta region of Balochistan province, located in north-central Pakistan, has been wracked by violence in recent months and years due in large part to its position along a prominent arms smuggling route. Car bombs, suicide bombings, and armed attacks are common, and often target the Balochistan Frontier Corps, local police forces, and lawyers. The latest attack in Quetta took place on June 11, when three policemen were killed by gunmen in an attack on a security checkpoint located along Quetta's main thoroughfare, Saryab Road. The Al-Alami faction of the Sunni militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) claimed responsibility.
There were well more than 100 deaths in Quetta linked to terrorism in 2016 alone, 70 of which occurred when the Quetta Civil Hospital was bombed in August 2016. The attack targeted the emergency wing of the hospital where a group of mourners, many of them lawyers, were gathered after a colleague was shot by assailants in the city earlier in the day. The attack was claimed by Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a splinter faction of the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan.
Due to a high threat from terrorism, as well as kidnapping and sectarian violence, throughout Pakistan, some Western governments advise their citizens against nonessential travel to the country, where foreign nationals, in particular Westerners, may be directly targeted.
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