Haroon Bilour killed in suicide blast
11 July, 2018
PESHAWAR: Awami National Party (ANP) candidate Barrister Haroon Bilour was among at least 13 people killed in a suicide blast targeting a corner meeting in Yaka Toot area of the provincial capital late Tuesday. At least 35 other people, including Haroon Bilour’s son Daniyal Bilour, were injured in the attack. Five were said to be in a critical condition at Lady Reading Hospital. The blast occurred as Haroon arrived at the stage to address supporters. He was contesting elections from PK-78 Peshawar.
Haroon was son of Bashir Ahmed Bilour, a senior ANP figure who was himself martyred in a suicide blast in Peshawar in 2012. Haroon succumbed to injuries shortly after he was whisked to a hospital. The Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) confirmed that it was a suicide blast.
Chief Election Commissioner Sardar Mohammad Raza condemned the attack and termed it a “weakness of security institutions”. He said that the attack was a
conspiracy against transparent elections, noting that the provincial governments were ordered to provide fool-proof security to all candidates. Following the harrowing incident, Interim Prime Minister Nasirul Mulk and heads of various political parties denounced the attack.
Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan expressed sorrow over the deaths. In his message on Twitter, the PTI chief called for provision of security to all political parties and their candidates.
While expressing sorrow over the killings, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari said: “The terror attack on pro-democracy
individuals is a conspiracy.” Pak Sarzameen Party (PSP) chief Mustafa Kamal said those who perpetrators did not deserve to be considered as humans.
Earlier on Monday, the Senate’s Standing Committee on Interior was told by the National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) that it had issued a security alert for several political parties’ leaders.
The authority said that it had apprised the federal and provincial interior ministers and law enforcement agencies about the security alert for Imran Khan,
Asfandyar Wali, Aftab Sherpao, Akram Khan Durrani, Ameer Haider Hoti, Talha Saeed and senior leadership of Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and the Pakistan
Muslim League Nawaz (PMLN). The committee expressed concerns over escalating threats to political leadership of the country and added that ensuring their
security was the responsibility of federal and provincial governments.