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Blast kills Pakistani provincial minister in PM's political heartland

Sunday, August 16, 2015 - 01:07

A bomb kills one of Pakistan's provincial ministers and at least eight others when it destroyed his home in Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's political heartland. Nathan Frandino reports.

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A Pakistani provincial minister's home was flattened after a suicide bomb exploded, killing the official and at least eight others. Police say Punjab minister Shuja Khanzada was holding meetings there in his hometown of Attock when the attack took place. Umer Khan says he was nearby when it happened. (SOUNDBITE) (Urdu) EYE WITNESS, UMER KHAN, SAYING: "The explosion was very loud. After a while I knew that the blast targeted Home Minister of Punjab, Colonel Shuja Khanzada. When I reached here I saw Khanzada's men working here. They were rescuing bodies and injured." The Taliban-affiliated militant group Lashkar-e-Islam claimed responsbility for the attack, calling it retaliation for military operations against them, but it was unclear if they were simply taking credit for the blast. Punjab is considered Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's political heartland. The province is traditionally more peaceful compared to other parts of Pakistan, which continues to be plagued by a Taliban insurgency, criminal gangs and sectarian violence.

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Blast kills Pakistani provincial minister in PM's political heartland

Sunday, August 16, 2015 - 01:07