21 killed in terrorist attack on Pakistani building
A Pakistani Taliban faction has claimed responsibility for the attack on a branch of the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra), which issues government ID cards, in the northwestern city of Mardan in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
Reuters quoted a police officer, Naeem Khan saying that, “A suicide bomber riding an explosives-laden motorcycle hit the Nadra office in Mardan where a large number of people were standing in queues.”
At least 21 people were killed and 78 were wounded, 28 of them critically, said Bilal Ahmad Faizi, spokesman for Rescue 1122 emergency responders. A Nadra employee, Mohammad Tariq, was inside when he heard the huge blast outside the office premises.
“We are still inside the office, and the police and rescue workers are busy in their work,” he said.
Jamaat ur Ahrar, a faction of the Pakistani Taliban that is fighting to overthrow the government and establish hard-line Islamist rule had claimed responsibility for the attack.
The militant’s spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan said the bombed office was part of the “heathen Pakistan state” and therefore a legitimate target.
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