'Unfazed' by attack, ANP vows to continue election campaign

'Unfazed' by attack, ANP vows to continue election campaign

'Unfazed' by attack, ANP vows to continue election campaign

Just two weeks before Pakistan's general elections, a suicide bomber of the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) killed at least 20 people, including senior leader of Awami National Party (ANP) Barrister Haroon Bilour and injured around 70 in an attack targeted at the meeting of the party late last night in the northwestern city of Peshawar.

General elections in Pakistan are set for July 25, with 342 seats in contention.

Mr Bilour's 16-year-old son Daniyal - among the 65 people wounded in the attack - called for calm after the bombing.

A case over the incident has been registered at police station Agha Mir Jani Shah with SHO Wajid Ali as the complainant.

The Election Commission of Pakistan announced a postponement of elections in Bilour's constituency, The Nation reported. The military waged a major offensive against militants in the Swat Valley in 2009.

People carry the coffins of the victims of a suicide bombing at an election rally for burial in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Wednesday. The bombing came hours after Pakistan Army spokesman said there were security threats ahead of the national elections. Bilour suffered serious injuries and was shifted to a hospital where he succumbed to the wounds, reports said.

His body was later taken to Bilour House where party workers paid tributes to him. Live TV footage showed volunteers and police rushing the wounded to hospital.

The attacker detonated his explosive belt close to the ANP leader's vehicle as he approached a rally organised to promote his election in the Yakatoot area of the provincial capital.

Pakistani terror organisations have claimed responsibility for attacks on several prominent political figures, including the assassination of former prime minister Benazir Bhutto in 2007.

Mosharraf Zaidi, head of Alif Ailaan, flayed the attack, saying "The horror continues for the Bilour family".

Chief Election Commissioner Raza Khan said the attack on an electoral candidate, despite the ECP's directions to provide security, was a result of the security institutions' negligence.

Responding to a question about the deadly attack on the party leader, "These are terrorists we are dealing with".

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