News Analysis |
In a deadly suicide bomb blast, in the southern Pakistani province of Balochistan, more than 128 people have been killed and 200 injured. Security sources said the explosion occurred at an election meeting of Nawabzada Siraj Raisani in Darengarh area of Mastung.
Political instability in the country is not only beneficial for some of the politicians in the country but it is also desirable for the foreign powers to protect their national interests.
Raisani, who was a candidate of the recently-formed Balochistan Awami Party, was killed in the suicide attack. He was the younger brother of Nawab Aslam Raisani, former chief minister of Balochistan.
The ISIS has claimed the responsibility for the deadly bomb blast, targeting a corner meeting. According to media reports, the Islamic State group has a muted presence in Pakistan but has carried out brutal attacks there in the past, including the blast at a Sufi shrine in February last year which killed nearly 90 people. Militants have targeted politicians, religious gatherings, security forces and even schools in Pakistan.
This was the third terrorist attack on a candidate ahead of general polls. Earlier on Friday, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl’s leader Akram Khan Durrani’s convoy was attacked in Bannu, resulting in the death of four people and injuries to around a dozen others. Durrani, who is contesting from NA-35 (Bannu), was returning from an election rally when his convoy was hit.
On July 10, a suicide blast had killed Awami National Party (ANP) leader Haroon Bilour and 19 others in Peshawar’s Yaktoot area. The attack was claimed by the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) which had also claimed responsibility for 2012 attack that killed Haroon’s father, Bashir Bilour.
On July 7, at least seven people, including a candidate of Muttahida Majlis-i-Amal (MMA), were injured when a convoy came under a bomb attack in Bannu.
Election violence in 2013:
According to a report, a total of 148 terrorist attacks were reported across Pakistan between January 1 and May 15, 2013– most of them in the months of April and May–that targeted political leaders and workers, election candidates, offices and rallies, and polling stations. As many as 170 people were killed and another 743 were injured in these attacks.
Militants have targeted politicians, religious gatherings, security forces and even schools in Pakistan.
“Out of total 148 attacks, 108 were perpetrated by the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and associated local Taliban and other militant groups which claimed the lives of 156 people and injured 665 others. Baloch nationalist insurgents carried out 40 such attacks that killed 14 people and injured another 78.”
Awami National Party (ANP) faced the maximum number of terrorist attacks between January 1 and May 15 (37), followed by Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) and Mutahidda Qaumi Movement (MQM) with 12 attacks each.
Who is targeting Pakistan and Pakistanis?
For the first time in the history of Pakistan, the institutions are working independently and rigorously to ensure a free and fair general election on July 25. The Supreme Court of Pakistan, the Election Commission of Pakistan and the other departments concerned are fulfilling their constitutional responsibilities to ensure a transparent election and a smooth transfer of power. But this is not what the regional global power wish to happen in Pakistan. Political instability in the country is not only beneficial for some of the politicians in the country but it is also desirable for the foreign powers to protect their national interests.
Dr. Moeed Pirzada, a political commentator, has repeatedly written and exerted in his talk shows that these attacks need to be understood while bearing one fundamental question into our heads; who benefits?
This is necessary for Pakistan to assess who benefits from these attacks before the general election in the country?