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Political violence claimed 24 lives in Pakistan during last week of March

Maverick Report

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ISLAMABAD: Twenty-four people were killed and 54 injured in nine incidents of political violence in Pakistan between March 23 and 29, 2013, compared as compared to the preceding week when 36 people were killed and 87 injured in 16 incidents, the Free and Fair Election Network (FAFEN) has reported.

During this reporting week, three political party workers were also killed in four incidents of electoral violence.

Civilian constituted majority of the 78 victims — 16 killed and 42 injured. Eight security personnel were also killed with another 12 sustaining injuries. Region-wise Balochistan was the most volatile where 10 people were killed and 42 injured, followed by the Federally Administered Tribal Areas or FATA (nine killed, 12 injured), Sindh (three killed) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (two killed).

During the week under review, nine incidents of political violence were reported in four districts and three tribal agencies, as compared to 16 incidents in four districts and two tribal agencies in the preceding week. Of these incidents, five attacks were aimed at public, three targeted security forces while another hit a gas pipeline.

In Jafarabad, a car bomb killed 10 people and injured 42 while a suicide attack killed six security personnel and injured 10 others in North Waziristan Agency. Two security personnel were also killed and as many sustained injuries in an attack on security personnel in Bajaur Agency. In Khyber Agency a female school teacher was shot dead by militants.

Three incidents of target killing in Karachi claimed the lives of as many people while two people were killed in Mardan. A gas pipeline was blown up in Dera Bugti by militants.

Terrorism incidents affected the most people during the reporting week leaving 21 people dead and 54 injured in six attacks — one each in Jafarabad, Dera Bugti, Khyber Agency, Bajaur Agency, North Waziristan Agency and Mardan. Three people were killed in as many incidents of target killings in Karachi.

Four incidents of electoral violence — three in Karachi and one in Charsadda — were reported that killed three Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) workers.

In another such incident in Charsadda, the house of a candidate of the Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) of former interior minister Aftab Ahmed Sherpao was damaged in a bomb attack.

Nine incidents of political violence were reported between March 23 and 29, 2013, showing a decrease from last week’s 16. Four incidents of electoral violence were also reported in Karachi, compared with three in the preceding week.

Region-wise incidents of violence in Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa decreased from last week’s 10 to three and three to one respectively, while these increased from two to three in FATA and one to two in Balochistan. No political violence incidents were reported in Punjab, Gilgit-Baltistan and the Frontier Regions.

The casualties of political violence increased from last week’s 123 to 78 during the reporting period. Civilian casualties remained the highest — 16 killed and 42 injured — constituting 67 percent of the total deaths. Eight security personnel were also killed with 12 sustaining injuries. No militants were killed or injured.

Region-wise Balochistan was the most volatile where 10 people were killed and 42 injured, followed by FATA (nine killed, 12 injured), Sindh (three killed) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (two killed).

This week, nine political violence incidents were reported in four districts and three tribal agencies, compared with 16 incidents in four districts and two tribal agencies in the preceding week. Of these five attacks were aimed at public, three targeted security forces while another hit a gas pipeline.

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