An explosion near a polio centre in Quetta, Pakistan, killed at least 14 people and injured more than 10 others on Wednesday, according to Pakistani media. Home Minister of Balochistan Mir Sarfaraz Bugti confirmed the incident and said, “The blast was apparently carried out by a suicide bomber.” At least 13 of those killed are believed to be police officials. They were taken to Civil Hospital Quetta, where an emergency has been declared, Dawn reported.

Eyewitnesses claim they heard firing after a loud blast. Security forces, who cordoned off the area, said polio teams were being dispatched from the targeted centre. On Monday, an anti-polio campaign was launched in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan, and other districts.

Polio workers are often targeted in the country, a result of rumours that the drive is a front for espionage or a conspiracy to sterilise Muslims. Pakistan is one of the two remaining countries in the World Health Organisation’s list of states still plagued by the disease.

More details to follow...