Pakistan suicide blast targeting police kills 3, wounds 28

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 Pakistan suicide blast targeting police kills 3, wounds 28
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By Gul Yousafzai


QUETTA, Pakistan (Reuters) -A suicide bomb blast in Pakistan's southwestern city of Quetta targeted a police patrol on Wednesday, killing three people and wounding 28, police said.

The explosion, claimed by the Pakistani Taliban militant group, or Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in a text message to Reuters, came after the group ended a ceasefire with the government this week.

"A bomb blast that targeted a police patrol wounded more than 30 people, including 15 police," a police official, Abdul Haq, told Reuters. "Out of them, a policeman, a woman and a child died."

The patrol had been guarding a polio vaccination team at the time of the suicide blast, he added.

Islamist militants in Pakistan often target polio vaccination teams, in the belief that the immunisation effort is a Western tool to spy on them.

Quetta is the capital of Pakistan's province of Balochistan bordering Afghanistan and Iran, where both Islamist and separatist insurgents operate.

(Reporting by Gul Yousafzai in Quetta and Asif Shahzad in Islamabad; Additional Reporting by Saud Mahsud in Dera Ismail Khan; Writing by Shivam Patel in New Delhi; Editing by Himani Sarkar and Clarence Fernandez)

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