Five killed in Pakistan train bombing

QUETTA Mon Oct 21, 2013 6:49am EDT

1 of 2. Officials, rescue workers and residents gather near the passenger train derailed after it was hit by a bomb attack in Dera Murad Jamali, located in the Nasirabad District of Balochistan province, October 21, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Amir Hussain

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QUETTA (Reuters) - At least five passengers were killed and 16 wounded when a train was bombed and derailed in restive southwest Pakistan on Monday, officials said.

It was not immediately clear who was responsible for the bombing, but arid western Baluchistan province is home to several separatist insurgents besides the Taliban and banned sectarian groups.

The train was travelling from the garrison city of Rawalpindi to the provincial capital, Quetta. Several carriages were destroyed in the explosion, which took place 200 km (124 miles) from Quetta, one of Pakistan's most violent cities.

"The explosives had apparently been planted on the railway tracks as the explosion created a crater several feet deep," said provincial government official Asad Gillani.

Most of the passengers were returning to Quetta after celebrating holidays at home, said another official. There were three brothers among the dead.

Separatist insurgents in Baluchistan accuse the government of exploiting the mineral-rich region while leaving inhabitants in poverty.

(This story was refiled to delete extraneous word in paragraph 5)

(Writing by Syed Raza Hassan; Editing by Katharine Houreld and Clarence Fernandez)

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