Bombings at market in northwest Pakistan kill 15

Terror returned to Kurram Agency on Friday when two blasts in a busy Parachinar market claimed the lives of more than 15 people and left over 70 others injured.

Twenty-seven people were killed and 175 people were hurt in Parachinar, a town in the Kurrum Agency, when two bombs exploded in a market, local political agent Basir Khan told CNN.

A second official said that as people rushed to rescue those wounded by the first explosion, a second blast took place.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the terrorist attack, directing the authorities concerned to beef up security arrangements across the country. Officials said an estimated 75 kg of explosives was packed into the auto.

The first blast came during rush hour in Toori bazaar, where people were buying food for iftar.

The incident happened hours after 11 people died in a suicide vehicle bomb attack in the southwestern city of Quetta.

Investigators said the attack targeted police.

Rescue services reached the spot of the explosions and started shifting the wounded to hospitals.

Jamaat-ul-Ahrar, a faction of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack in Quetta in a message sent to the media by spokesperson Asad Mansur.

Eleven persons killed in the attack.

So far, no group has claimed responsibility for the attacks yet. The province is the base of a separatist movement as well as home to the Taliban and other militant Islamist groups.

National Assembly Member from Parachinar Sajid Tori said that the critical injured would be shifted to Peshawar for treatment.

Stunned survivors could give few details about the attack. "I got injured and fell down", said one victim, Gulzar Ahmad.

Pakistan army, meanwhile, launched a countrywide intelligence-led military operation against militants.

Resource-rich Baluchistan province has been plagued by violence for years.

  • Leroy Wright