WASHINGTON: Following the suicide attacks in Balochistan and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, the United States on Monday assured that it would continue to assist Pakistan’s efforts to counter all forms of violent extremism, said a State Department’s spokesperson in his daily press briefing.
Spokesperson Matthew Miller highlighted that a high-level counterterrorism (CT) dialogue was held between Washington and Islamabad earlier this year. He explained that the dialogue focused on discussing the shared terrorist threats facing the two countries and working on strategies to cooperate in areas such as border security, and terrorist financing.
“We will continue to work with Pakistan to ensure that we can better assist Pakistan’s effort to counter all forms of violent extremism,” said the spokesperson.
Miller said that Pakistanis have suffered tremendously from terrorist attacks.
“They deserve to practice their faith without fear,” he said while offering deepest condolences to families who lost their loved ones and speedy recovery to those injured.
On Friday, Balochistna's Mastung was rocked by a suicide attack — which marked the second major explosion in the district in September — near a mosque where 43 people lost their lives instantly while preparing for a celebratory procession in honour of Eid Miladun Nabi.
The death toll rose to 60 after another injured victim Muhammad Rafiq — who had been receiving medical care at the Civil Hospital Trauma Center in Quetta — succumbed to his injuries on Sunday.
On the same day, a blast ripped through a mosque in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Hangu killing five people including a policeman.
The incident took place within the parameters of Police Station Doaba during the Friday sermon — a time when scores of believers are gathered at a mosque for their weekly prayer.
The police officials had said that two militants tried entering the police station and started firing at the gate. They had added that one of the terrorists was killed at the gate by the police in retaliatory fire.
Moreover, two policemen were also injured during the firing, officials of the law enforcement agency said, adding that the other militant blew himself up inside the mosque.
The timely action by the police resulted in fewer casualties following the blast, they had added.
Following the blasts, during a press conference in Quetta, Caretaker Interior Minister Sarfraz Bugti said that the Indian intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), was involved in carrying out terror incidents in Pakistan.
Bugti had said that the authorities knew who was involved in these activities and would avenge every drop of blood of Pakistanis.
The minister had also pledged to utilise all resources to eliminate terrorism, stressing that there’s no place for militants and their facilitators in the country.