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24 pilgrims killed in Pakistan

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Islamabad, June 9:

At least 24 pilgrims were killed Sunday night after a group of attackers targeted their buses in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Balochistan, the media reported.

Some unknown miscreants attacked two buses outside a hotel in the Taftan area of Chaghi, a district near Pakistan-Iran border, Xinhua quoted Interior Secretary of Balochistan province Akbar Durrani as saying.

“Some blasts were heard followed by intense firing after the buses parked outside a hotel where passengers were scheduled to stay overnight,” Durrani said.

The attack injured several people who were rushed to a hospital in Chaghi and Quetta, the provincial capital of Balochistan.

Durrani said a convoy of 10 buses carrying a number of Shia pilgrims was on its way from Iran to Quetta.

According to the media reports, the attack was of suicide nature but authorities have not confirmed it so far.

Officials said the attackers first hurled two hand grenades at two buses of the convoy parked outside the Hashmi Hotel before opening indiscriminate firing with automatic guns at them.

Security forces and police rushed to the site and cordoned off the area.

No group or militant organisation has claimed responsibility for the attack.

(IANS)