April 25, 2023

Twin blasts kill 17 in Pakistan

Blasts kill 17 in Pakistan

By Biodun Busari

No fewer than 17 people have died following the two explosions that hit a Pakistani counterterrorism facility in the country’s northwest region on Monday.

The police said the blasts were caused by electrical shorts and not a “terror attack” as initially suggested.

The death toll from explosions in the ammunition depot rose to 17 after the occurrence in Kabal town of Swat district in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan, Al-Jazeera said.

The dead were nine policemen, five detainees and three civilians, local police chief Shafiullah Gandapur said.

More than 50 people, mostly police officers, were also wounded when the shorts ignited explosions seconds apart, according to Akhtar Hayat, another provincial police officer.

Initially, police said the explosions could be an act of “terrorism” but an investigation later concluded that short circuits were the cause, a police statement released on Tuesday said.

Nasir Mahmood Satti, a district police chief, also confirmed there was no attack.

Police and government officials attended a collective funeral on Tuesday for the officers killed in the blasts.

Officials and others attend the funeral prayer of police officers, who were killed in Monday’s explosions in Kabal, a town of Pakistan’s Swat district.