UN chief condemns Pakistan violence

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has strongly condemned the recent bomb attacks in Pakistan in which more than 100 people, including many Shia Muslims, were killed.

“The secretary general is deeply concerned about ongoing terrorist violence in Pakistan,” the UN spokesperson said in a statement on Friday.

“He strongly condemns the multiple attacks in Quetta and the Swat Valley,” the statement added.

A total of 129 people were killed and more than 280 wounded in three bomb attacks across Pakistan on Thursday.

At least 92 Pakistanis lost their lives and more than 200 others were injured in twin bomb attacks that targeted Shia Muslims in a crowded billiards hall in Quetta. Earlier in the day, 12 security forces were also killed in a bomb explosion at a security checkpoint in the city.

In another incident, a bomb detonated inside a mosque in the Swat Valley of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, northwest of Islamabad, leaving 25 Sunni Muslims dead and 80 others wounded.

“He (the UN secretary general) reiterates the strong support of the UN for the efforts of the government of Pakistan to combat the scourge of terrorism and hopes that the perpetrators of these violent acts will be brought to justice,” the statement said.

Thousands of Pakistanis have lost their lives in bombings and other militant attacks since 2001, when Pakistan entered an alliance with the US in the so-called war against terrorism.

Since late 2009, there has been a surge in militant attacks in Pakistan. Thousands have been displaced by the wave of violence and militancy sweeping the country.

Hundreds of Shia Muslims were killed across Pakistan last year. The attacks targeted many doctors, engineers, high-ranking government officials, teachers, and politicians.

GJH/MA