A bomb exploded in hotel’s parking area, killing 5 and leaving around 10 injured

The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP or Pakistani Taliban) has claimed responsibility for a bomb attack near a luxury hotel in the city of Quetta on Wednesday night.

Media reports said a powerful bomb had exploded in the parking area of the Serena Hotel, killing at least five people and leaving around 10 injured, according to Geo News.

The Pakistani Taliban, which is separate from the insurgent group in Afghanistan, issued a statement after the attack and said it was a suicide attack.

Baluchistan Home Minister Ziaullah Langove had claimed Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Nong Rong had been staying at the hotel. While local media reports claimed the Chinese ambassador was the apparent target of the attack, Langove was quoted by The Dawn as saying the diplomat was not present at the hotel at the time of the incident.

"I have just met the Chinese ambassador and he is in high spirits," Langove was quoted as saying by The Dawn. Langove said no hotel guests were injured in the attack; a policeman was among the victims.

Ironically, Pakistan's Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed pointed fingers at India over the attack, although he did not provide evidence to back up his claim. Rashid Ahmed claimed India did not want peace in Pakistan. "Anti-Pakistan elements want to damage the country's peace. Terrorists shall meet their end," he was quoted as saying by Geo News.

Past Attacks

Luxury hotels in Pakistan have been targeted by terrorists in the past.

The Dawn reported, "In May 2019, at least five people were killed and several injured in a gun-and-bomb attack targeting the five-star Pearl Continental hotel in Gwadar. It was claimed by the banned Baluchistan Liberation Army. In 2008, 60 people were killed when a suicide bomber rammed a truck packed with 600 kilogrammes of high explosives into the outer gates of the five-star Marriott hotel in Islamabad. The attack destroyed part of the hotel which was then shut down and opened a few months later surrounded by a massive, bomb-proof wall. The following year, at least nine people were killed in a gun and suicide car bomb attack at Peshawar's five-star Pearl Continental."