PESHAWAR: At least two people were killed and 19 others injured, including two Americans working for the US Consulate, in a suicide bombing on Peshawar’sAbdara road on Monday, DawnNews reported.
A vehicle of the US Consulate was the target of the attack, sources said, adding that technical and administrative staff of the Consulate were occupants in the targeted vehicle.
The blast took place close to the residential quarters used by the US consulate in the northwestern city and near the office of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) when a vehicle laden with explosives rammed into the consulate’s car.
The consulate vehicle was destroyed in the blast, whereas several other vehicles and five to six nearby buildings were also damaged. The explosion left a four-feet-wide and eight-feet-deep crater on the road and uprooted electricity poles in the vicinity.
CCPO Peshawar Imtiaz Altaf confirmed that 110 kilograms of explosives were used in the attack.
Earlier, Information Minister Mian Iftikhar Hussain had told reporters at least four people, including two Americans, were killed in the attack. However, the US embassy denied any US citizens were killed, instead confirming that two Americans working for the consulate were injured and were were shifted to the US Club in another consulate vehicle immediately after the attack.
The blast also wounded two Pakistani employees of the consulate, the US Embassy in Islamabad said in a statement.
“We can confirm that a vehicle belonging to the US Consulate in Peshawar was hit in an apparent terrorist attack. Two US personnel and two Pakistani staff of the Consulate were injured and are receiving medical treatment. No US Consulate personnel were killed, but we are seeking further information about other victims of this heinous act. We stand ready to work with Pakistani authorities on a full investigation so that the perpetrators can be brought to justice,” Department of State Spokesperson Ambassador Victoria Nuland said in the statement released by the embassy.
Sources at the Khyber Teaching Hospital confirmed two dead bodies had been received and 19 injured people had been brought in for treatment after the blast.
The passport of a US national was also found from the site of the explosion.
Speaking to media representatives at the site of the explosion, Federal Minister for Communications Arbab Alamgir Khan confirmed that two foreign nationals had been injured in the attack.
Sources told DawnNews that threats had been received two days ago about an attack on the US consulate after which security had been put on high alert.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack yet.