Two separate bombs kill 32, hurt 100 in Pakistan cities

Thu Jan 10, 2013 10:15am EST
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By Gul Yusufzai and Jibran Ahmad

QUETTA/PESHAWAR, Pakistan (Reuters) - Bomb blasts in two Pakistani cities killed 32 people and injured more than 100, police and hospital officials said.

A bomb in Quetta, the capital of the eastern province of Balochistan, killed 11 people and injured more than 40, police officer Zubair Mehmood said. A local militant group claimed responsibility.

Another 21 were killed and more than 60 injured in a bombing where people had gathered to hear a religious leader speak in Mingora, the largest city in the northwestern province of Swat, police and officials at the Saidu Sharif hospital said.

"The death toll may rise as some of the injured are in critical condition and we are receiving more and more injured people," said Dr. Niaz Mohammad.

Police initially said the Swat blast was caused by an exploding gas cylinder but later police chief Akhtar Hayat said it was a bomb.

It has been more than two years since a militant attack has claimed that many lives in Swat.

The mountainous region, formerly a tourist destination, has been administered by the Pakistani army since their 2009 offensive drove out Taliban militants who had taken control.

But the Taliban retain their ability to mount attacks in Swat and shot schoolgirl campaigner Malala Yousufzai in Mingora last October.   Continued...

A police official gestures at the scene of a bomb explosion in Quetta January 10, 2013. REUTERS/Naseer Ahmed