TTP claims responsibility for suicide attack on PTI candidate

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Police officer Zahoor Afridi says Ikramullah Gandapur, who is running for a parliament seat from opposition leader Imran Khan’s party, and three others, including two policemen, were wounded in Sunday’s attack. (Photo courtesy: social media)
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Police officer Zahoor Afridi says Ikramullah Gandapur, who is running for a parliament seat from opposition leader Imran Khan’s party, and three others, including two policemen, were wounded in Sunday’s attack. (Photo courtesy: social media)
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Police officer Zahoor Afridi says Ikramullah Gandapur, who is running for a parliament seat from opposition leader Imran Khan’s party, and three others, including two policemen, were wounded in Sunday’s attack. (Photo courtesy: social media)
Updated 24 July 2018
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TTP claims responsibility for suicide attack on PTI candidate

  • Suicide bomber detonated his explosives near the PTI candidate’s vehicle in Kulachi area of Dera Ismail Khan
  • In Bannu District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, a senior political leader of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, Akram Durrani’s convoy came under fire but no one was injured

ISLAMABAD: A suicide blast in Dera Ismail Khan, on Sunday, killed Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) candidate Ikramullah Gandapur and his driver. Ikramullah Khan was returning home after addressing a political gathering when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives near the PTI candidate’s vehicle in Kulachi area of Dera Ismail Khan.
Mohammad Khorasani, spokesman for the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) militant group, claimed responsibility for the suicide attack in Dera Ismail Khan in a statement.
TTP Spokesman said in a statement that the target was former provincial minister Ikram-Ullah Khan Gandapur.
Dera Ismail Khan is a district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa bordering tribal districts.
Ikramullah Gandapur was contesting the elections for the provincial assembly seat PK-99 on a PTI ticket.
“Prime Minister Justice (R) Nasir-ul-Mulk has expressed grief over the demise of Ikram-Ullah Gandapur who embraced martyrdom during the attack on his election campaign in DI Khan,” PM Office said in brief statement.
While reacting to the suicide bombing, PTI Chief Imran Khan in his tweet strongly condemned the cowardly terrorist attack against Ikram Khan Gandapur.
In a separate incident, on Sunday, in Bannu District of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, a senior political leader of Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA), Akram Durrani’s convoy came under fire but no one was injured.
Earlier this month four people were killed and at least 30 injured when the convoy of Akram Khan Durrani, an MMA candidate, was targeted in a bomb blast in Bannu. Durrani was not hurt in the attack.
Pakistan has seen a new spate of terrorist attacks in recent weeks ahead of the general election scheduled for Wednesday (July 25).


Beijing dismisses ‘hearsay’ on Muslim internment

Updated 13 November 2018
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Beijing dismisses ‘hearsay’ on Muslim internment

  • Critics say China is seeking to assimilate Xinjiang’s minority population and suppress religious and cultural practices that belong in the minority
  • Beijing has repeatedly described the camps as vocational “training centers” that were built to help people drawn to extremism

BEIJING: China defended its internment of Muslims in the country’s northwest as a terror prevention measure on Tuesday, calling on the international community to reject “hearsay” and believe its official line.
Up to a million Uighurs and other Chinese Turkic-speaking minority groups have been placed in political re-education camps in the Xinjiang region, according to a group of experts cited by the United Nations.
After originally denying the existence of the centers, Beijing has repeatedly described the camps as vocational “training centers” that were built to help people drawn to extremism to stay away from terrorism and allow them to be reintegrated into society.
But the program has faced rising criticism outside the country — notably from the United States and human rights groups.
“We hope our journalist friends and our other foreign friends will take into consideration the information and briefings on the situation given by the Chinese authorities,” said China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi.
“Rumours and hearsay should not be believed,” he said standing next to his German counterpart Heiko Maas at a press conference.
“It’s quite clear that the government in Xinjiang knows best what is happening in Xinjiang — not other people and third party organizations.”
Critics say China is seeking to assimilate Xinjiang’s minority population and suppress religious and cultural practices that conflict with Communist ideology and the dominant Han culture.
Former inmates of the camps say they were detained for having long beards or wearing the veil.
Attacks attributed to Uighurs have left hundreds dead over the last few years in China, many of them in Xinjiang, where Beijing says its concerned about a rise in Islamic radicalism.
The authorities have put in place intrusive measures of security — ubiquitous surveillance cameras, DNA sampling, home visits by officials and GPS trackers in cars.
“We call that a combination of repression and prevention. But we place the priority on prevention. If it’s done well, terrorism won’t expand and take root. It’s the most effective way to combat terrorism,” Wang Yi said.
The German foreign minister did not mention the Xinjiang region at the press conference, but did say he had “spoken on the question of human rights” during his closed meeting with his Chinese counterpart.
A debate on the situation in Xinjiang was held in the German parliament last Thursday.
China’s ambassador to Berlin expressed Beijing’s “profound discontent” and put in an official protest following the “blatant interference” in its “domestic affairs.”