Surge in electoral violence kills 23; political violence decreases: FAFEN

Islamabad: Thirteen incidents of electoral violence claimed 23 lives – mostly workers of the Awami National Party ANP while 54 others were injured between April 13 and 19, 2013, says the Free and Fair Election Network FAFEN. Also, 10 incidents of political violence left 24 people dead and 28 injured during the week, compared with the preceding week’s 170 killed and 42 injured in 20 incidents.

Civilians constituted majority of political violence victims – 17 killed and 10 injured. Seven security personnel were also killed and 18 sustained injuries. Region wise, FATA was the most volatile with seven people killed and 18 injured, followed by Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 9 killed, 10 injured and Sindh 8 killed.

This week, 10 political violence incidents were reported in two districts and as many tribal agencies compared with 20 incidents reported in nine districts and three tribal agencies in the preceding week. Of the 10 attacks, five were aimed at public, two hit state infrastructure and one each was targeted at security forces, an anti polio team and private property.

In Karachi, two targeted attacks claimed the lives of four people while as many sectarian violence incidents killed four.

In one incident, a gas pipeline was blown up, while a polio team escaped unhurt in another attack. In a bomb attack on a bus in Peshawar, nine people were killed and 10 sustained injuries. In Khyber Agency, a public school and two houses of anti Taliban peace committee members were blown up. In North Waziristan Agency, an IED explosion killed seven security personnel and injured 18.

Another ANP leader escaped unhurt in another attack, also in Charsadda. In Peshawar, four policemen and 11 workers at an ANP election rally – were killed and 50 others injured in a suicide attack. A grenade was thrown at the house of a PPPP candidate in Peshawar, however no one was hurt. In Swabi, a grenade attack on an ANP candidate left one worker injured while in Swat, an ANP candidate was killed when a bomb went off near his car. Two supporters of an independent candidate were killed and three injured in a firing incident in Dera Ismail Khan.