Deadly blast strikes Pakistan's Quetta

Deadly suicide attack targets Pakistani army in Quetta, over 50 killed, wounded

"According to the information we have received so far, there are around 15 casualties, people who were martyred, and around 40 people were wounded", Bugti said.

At least 15 people, including eight security personnel, were killed and scores were wounded when a powerful bomb went off near an army truck in Quetta on Saturday.

Pakistan's army press wing said the patrol was the target and there were at least seven civilians among the 15 killed.

It said the explosives sparked fires in nearby vehicles.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. The city has been put on high alert following the blast.

In August past year, at least 74 people were killed in a suicide attack on the city's Civil Hospital, while another 60 were killed in an attack on a police academy two months later.

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"COAS condemns terrorist attack on Army truck in Quetta, an attempt to mar Indep Day festivity. Our resolve won't succumb to any challenge", General Bajwa said.

Interior Minister Balochistan Sarfraz Bugti told ARY News that it was a huge blast but he can not say anything about the nature of blast.

The area was cordoned off following the blast, with a high-level search operation being initiated.

The local affiliate has been known to work with Pakistani militant groups in previous attacks.

Balochistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, has oil and gas resources but is afflicted by Islamist militancy, sectarian violence between Sunni and Shiite Muslims and a separatist insurgency.

A judicial report released after an attack on the province's lawyers left more than 70 dead criticized security provisions in the region and called for increased clampdowns on extremists.

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