Explosive violence by Islamic StateExplosive violence in Pakistan

Suicide bomber kills 15 in Pakistan

On Saturday, August 12th 2017, a suicide bomber on a motorcycle attacked a military truck near a busy bus station in Quetta, in Baluchistan Province, Pakistan. The blast left 15 dead and at least 25 wounded.

Though it was a military vehicle targeted, many of the dead and injured were civilians. Of the 15 killed, seven were civilians, as well as 15 of the 25 wounded.

Other outlets suggest the number of wounded could be higher than 40.

It is thought that the blast was an attempt to sabotage Pakistan’s Independence Day celebrations, marking its 70th anniversary today, August 14th.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for Saturday’s attack. From forensic evidence it is believed that 25kg of ‘incendiary explosives’ were being carried by the bomber.

Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) has been monitoring explosive violence harm across the globe since 2011. Between 2011-2016, Pakistan has seen 23,531 deaths and injuries from explosive violence.

Last year, Pakistan saw over 2,000 deaths and injuries from explosive violence. 77% of civilian casualties were caused by IEDs.

Despite the number of IED incidents decreasing in 2016 compared to the previous year (from 95 in 2015 to 86 in 2016), the numbers of civilians killed or injured by IEDs increased by 19%.

The number of civilians killed and injured by suicide attacks increased by 93%.

AOAV condemns the attacks in Pakistan, and calls for states and international organisations to work collaboratively to generate greater awareness of the number of civilians killed and injured each year by IEDs, and encourage a greater stigma from political, religious and social leaders on the use of IEDs. There is an urgent need for preventative measures to be implemented by States and the international community.

For more on counter-IED initiatives, please see here. To read AOAV’s recent report, Understanding the regional and transnational networks that facilitate IED use, please see here.