Bus explosion kill 18 in Hungu


PESHAWAR – At least 18 people were killed and another 11 injured when a high-intensity bomb exploded inside a passenger bus in Jozara near Hangu city on Monday.
The ill-fated passenger coach was on its way from Thall to Peshawar. Officials said the high intensity explosion occurred when the passenger coach reached the Abdul Ali Bangash checkpost. All 18 passengers on board the coach were killed instantly.
The dead included women and children. Another vehicle was also damaged because of the explosion and 11 of its occupants sustained injuries. Earlier, there were conflicting statements regarding the nature of the blast. Kohat Deputy Inspector General Masud Bangash and Hangu District Police Officer Abdul Rashid claimed that the blast occurred when the gas cylinder in the vehicle exploded. Kohat Commissioner Khalid Khan Omarzai, on the other hand, said explosives had been placed in the vehicle.
Omarzai told Pakistan Today that experts from the bomb disposal squad confirmed that explosives placed in the vehicle had went off. He said investigation was underway. However, latest reports from the AFP quoted district police chief Abdul Rashid as saying, “The report of the bomb disposal squad shows that explosive materials fitted with a timer were placed near the gas cylinders which caused the explosion.”
Senior police official Masood Khan Afridi confirmed to AFP that the blast was caused by high-intensity explosives. “It was a terrorist attack,” he said. “We are looking for the owner of the vehicle, as the driver was killed in the blast,” he added.