The blast struck outside a hospital in the city of Quetta, the capital of volatile south-western Balochistan province, Police official Kashif Shabir said.

lawyers
lawyers
Lawyers were gathered outside the clinic to collect the body of the chief of the provincial bar association who was shot dead earlier in the day, police official Asif Iqbal and intelligence official Shahid Ahmed said.

At least 46 dead bodies were taken in to Quetta’s Civil Hospital, the clinic that was bombed, Police surgeon Noor Baloch told dpa.

Another 18 bodies were at the military hospital, medic Abdul Hakeem said, while two corpses were taken to Bolan Medical College.

Nearly 200 lawyers were being treated at different hospitals in the city, Iqbal said, some with critical injuries.

“The death toll may go up,” said Baloch, who was treating some of the injured.

Lawyer associations announced seven days of mourning and a one-day boycott of courts all over Pakistan to protest against the bombing.

No group has claimed responsibility but the attack carried the hallmarks of anti-Shiite Lashkar-e-Jhangvi militant group, said Khan Wasseh, a spokesman from the paramilitary Frontier Corps force.

It was the deadliest attack in Pakistan since a Taliban suicide bomber killed more than 70 people in March, mostly members of Christian community.

Overall violence has declined significantly since the military pushed back Islamist militants from the country’s tribal regions in offensives since mid-2014.

Balochistan, Pakistan’s largest, mineral-rich province, has been facing violence on several fronts for decades by Islamist militants, sectarian groups and other organizations.

Source: dpa/GNA/News Ghana

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