A bomb blast in a crowded bus in the western Pakistani city of Quetta’s Sariab road in killed at least 11 people on Monday.
Quetta is the provincial capital and 9th largest city of the Balochistan region, which has been racked by years of separatist violence against government personnel and security forces as well as non-Baluch ethnic groups.
Police official Abdul Waheed Khattak said that the registration number of the bus was confirmed as BSA-348 and it was carrying dozens of passengers home from work and was bound for the city suburbs.
No extremist groups have claimed responsibility for Monday’s attack.
According to Khattak the bomb was probably put on the roof of the bus and set off with a timed detonator.
The Home Minister of Balochistan, Sarfaraz Ahmed Bugti, said that the attack targeted innocent people.
“We are fighting against terrorism here. And we will keep fighting until the last terrorist is killed,” he said.
The home minister said that at least one child died in the incident, but rescue personnel have confirmed that two children are among those who were killed in the explosion.
Chief Minister Dr. Abdul Malik Baloch also said that a state of emergency has been declared at Quetta’s hospitals where at least 21 people were injured.
Abdul Malik strongly condemned the bombing and called it "a conspiracy against durable peace in Balochistan."
Balochistan has also been the focus of manyattacks by the banned militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.
These attacks have hurt Pakistan which wants to open a trade corridor with Chinese investment.
The much-vaunted project, announced when Chinese President Xi Jinping visited Pakistan in April, envisages an eastern and western route, with the latter passing through Quetta to the port of Gwadar in the south.