ISKP Claims Responsibility for Bombing at JUI-F Rally in Pakistan; Over 50 Dead

ISKP Claims Responsibility for Bombing at JUI-F Rally in Pakistan; Over 50 Dead


What You Need to Know:

The Islamic State– Khorasan Province (ISKP) has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing on Sunday that targeted a political rally of Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province, which left dozens dead and over 200 wounded.

The Attack:

On Sunday, an ISKP militant detonated a suicide vest during a workers’ convention rally of JUI-F in the town of Khar, Bajaur district, which killed at least 50 people and wounded over 200 others. The blast occurred in close proximity to a stage where several party leaders were gathering, which was surrounded by a close crowd of several hundred JUI-F members and supporters. Among the dead was Maulana Ziaullah Jan, the Emir of Tehsil Khar, and Maulana Hameedullah Haqqani, the General Secretary of JUI-F Tehsil Navagi.

KP Inspector General of Police Akhtar Hayat Khan reported that the suicide vest was comprised of 10kg of explosives and ball bearings, which is standard for suicide devices.

JUI-F leader Hafiz Hamdullah said he was supposed to have attended the rally, but backed out last minute due to other obligations. Hamdullah condemned the attack and criticized KP officials of not providing the event with sufficient security, telling Aaj News that “We had approached the management for the convention, but the management did not provide security, and excused to give security. When the chief secretary came, there was heavy security with him. But security was not provided to rallies.”

The Claim:

ISKP claimed responsibility for the attack through Amaq, stating that “the attack comes in the natural context of the ongoing war. The Islamic State is waging it against “democracy” as a regime hostile to true Islam and in conflict with its divine law.”

al-Qaeda Chimes in:

Al-Qaeda has condemned the bombing, calling it a “reprehensible and criminal act.” In their statement, the terror group also said that such attacks go against Islamic Sharia and tarnish Jihad.

Why it Matters:

The attack has raised concerns about Pakistan’s security situation as the country faces a general election this fall amid the backdrop of mass civil unrest and political instability following the ousting of Prime Minister Imran Khan last year. While this marks the first attack by a militant group against a political rally this year, it sets the stage on how militant organizations will seek to disrupt the election process.

ISKP has regularly targeted JUI-F, criticizing the party as being aligned with the Taliban and serving the interests of the Pakistani state, rather than an Islamic state. with this, ISKP has issued a fatwa against JUI-F religious scholars, openly calling for them to be assassinated. Over the past five years, ISKP militants have killed several JUI-F leaders. ISKP, while still a persistent threat regionally, is not expected to have a significant impact on national security for the election.

Unbiased & Unfiltered News Reporting for 12+ years. Covering Geo-Political conflicts, wartime events, and vital Breaking News from around the world. Editor-In-Chief of Atlas News.
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