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Minority group stages protest following Hazarganji blast

ANI | Updated: Apr 13, 2019 18:34 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], Apr 13 (ANI): Members of the Hazara community on Saturday demonstrated a sit-in protest demanding better security measures for their people following the massive blast in Hazarganji market area, a day before.  
The minority community has been staging the protest at Western Bypass of Quetta for last 23 hours urging the government to implement an effective security plan and ensure the protection of the Hazara community, The News International reported. 
“Once again our people were the target and once again we will have to bury our dear ones,” Qadir Nayil, a Hazara community leader was quoted, as saying.
“We demand more security from the government and all those involved in today’s act of terrorism should be found and punished,” he added.  
At least 20 people were reportedly killed and over 48 others injured in a suicide blast believed to be targeting members of the minority Shia Hazara community in Quetta's Hazarganji market on Friday morning.
The attack claimed the lives of nine Hazara and one Frontier Corps (FC) soldier who was deputed for the community’s security, Deputy Inspector General (DIG), Quetta, Abdul Razzaq Cheema informed.
However, Balochistan Home Minister Ziaullah Langove, on Friday in a press conference, said that the blast was not targeting “a specific community”.
“Our guess is that no specific community was targeted. Marri Baloch and FC personnel were among those killed as well. The numbers of the Hazara community were just greater,” Langove said.
Samaa News reported that a faction of the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility of the attack. The group said it collaborated with banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, a terror group plotting numerous attacks against the on Hazara community in Balochistan.
Amid the on-going US-led peace talks in Afghanistan, the Taliban on Friday announced its annual spring offensive or the so-called fighting season, aiming to "eradicate occupation" and "cleanse Muslim homeland from invasion and corruption".
Women and children belonging to the Hazara community were among the protestors staging the sit-in since shortly after the blast. (ANI)