QUETTA - At least six policemen were killed and 15 security personnel were wounded Tuesday when three suicide bombers blew themselves up in quick succession in Quetta.

“The first suicide bomber blew himself up outside paramilitary Frontier Corps checkpost in the outskirts of Quetta after he was spotted by the guards,” Balochistan Home Secretary Ghulam Ali Baloch told AFP. “Just in the next moments, another bomber who was covering the first attacker exchanged fire with the security forces and later blew himself up.”

Some eight paramilitary officials were wounded in this attack, he said.

Around half an hour later a third bomber drove his motorcycle into a police truck on a road leading to the airport, killing at least six policemen, Baloch added.

Moazam Jah Ansari, Quetta’s police chief, confirmed the attacks and said the bombing of the police truck was so powerful that the vehicle overturned. “It is a suicide attack, and we have a confirmation that six of our police officials are dead,” Ansari told Reuters.

It was not clear whether the third bomber was wearing an explosive vest or if the bike was filled with explosives. “Seven policemen were injured in this attack,” he said, adding that the three blasts may have been coordinated.

Hizbul Ahrar, an offshoot of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed both attacks.

“We are in a warlike situation,” Quetta DIG Razzaq Cheema said at the scene of the attack on the police vehicle. “Security forces are on alert and we have to win this war.”

PM CONDEMNS QUETTA

TERROR ATTACK

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi strongly condemned terror attacks in Quetta resulting in loss of precious lives and injuries to many. The prime minister expressed his deep sympathies with the bereaved families.

Militants and separatist groups have waged violence in mineral-rich Balochistan, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, for more than a decade.

Terrorists linked to the Taliban, Al-Qaeda and ISIS have been operating in the province. ISIS has created a branch in Pakistan and Afghanistan, mostly by recruiting among breakaway factions of other established terrorist groups. Its followers have claimed some of Pakistan’s most deadly recent attacks.

Six members of Pakistan’s tiny Christian minority community, four of them from the same family, and two people from the Shi’ite minority were gunned down in Quetta this month.