Fri, May 12, 2006 - Page 1 News List

Series of blasts kill six at Pakistan police academy

AGENCIES , QUETTA, PAKISTAN

At least six policemen were killed and 13 wounded yesterday in a series of landmine explosions at a police training school in Pakistan's troubled southwest, police and hospital sources said.

Five landmines went off in quick succession as commandos of the police Anti-Terrorist Force were training at the school on the outskirts of Quetta, capital of Baluchistan Province.

"The blasts occurred one after another," Senior Superintendent of Police Qazi Abdul Wahid said.

The bombs, wired together to go off in sequence, were hidden around a firing range at the training academy, senior city police official Wazir Nasar said.

Four of the injured were seriously hurt, said Mohammed Abdullah, a doctor at the state-run Civil Hospital in Quetta.

"We received six bodies and nine injured people," he said.

The explosion left five small craters across the field that made up the firing range. The area was strewn with body parts and black and khaki scraps of police uniforms, according to a reporter.

The blasts happened when 52 members of a police anti-terrorism unit were doing physical exercise at the firing range, Nasar said.

The bombs were made from land mines, Baluchistan police chief Chaudhry Mohammed Yaqoob said on Pakistan's Geo television.

Nasar said the bombs were believed to have contained 12kg of explosives and were set up in a way so they would all explode after the first was detonated.

No one has claimed responsibility for the blasts but police blamed the Baluch Liberation Army (BLA), a militants group listed as a terrorist organization by the government last month.

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