Skip to main content

Eight people killed as Pakistani Taliban target more candidates

By CNN Staff
updated 5:28 AM EDT, Mon April 29, 2013
Commuters pass under the flags and posters of political parties in Quetta, Pakistan, on Sunday.
Commuters pass under the flags and posters of political parties in Quetta, Pakistan, on Sunday.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Pakistani Taliban claim responsibility for bombings of candidates' offices
  • Group says secular elections are unacceptable
  • Pakistan's elections are to be held May 11

(CNN) -- At least eight people were killed Sunday as the Pakistani Taliban continued to attack candidates in that country's upcoming elections, authorities said.

The Pakistani Taliban, in a statement obtained by CNN, took responsibility for the bombings at the offices of candidates in Peshawar and the Orakzai Agency.

The Taliban said it targeted secular candidates, but many parties have been hit by the increasing violence.

"A man cannot be secular and Muslim at a time. These are two different doctrines in nature," the statement said.

The elections in May mark the first time in Pakistan's history that one democratically elected government will give way to another.

2012: History of the Pakistani Taliban

The nation has experienced three military coups, been ruled by generals for half its life, and it remains mired in near-constant political turmoil.

Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud has told Pakistanis to stay away from the elections.

"We are not in favor of democracy, democracy is for Jews and Christians," he said in recent propaganda video.

"They are intended to divide Muslims; we want the implementation of Sharia (law) and for that jihad is necessary," he added.

Both attacks Sunday targeted independent candidates.

Five people died and 22 were wounded by Sunday's explosion in Orakzai, said Dilawar Khan Bangish, police chief of the Kohat District.

In Peshawar, three people were killed and eight wounded, said Khalid Mehmood Hamdani, a senior police official.

The bombings follow three attacks Saturday and one Friday.

The Pakistani Taliban are closely linked with the group's namesake in Afghanistan as well as with al Qaeda. It shares its religious extremist ideology -- but is its own distinct group that wants to replace the Pakistani government with an Islamist one.

Elections are scheduled for May 11.

CNN's Aliza Kassim contributed to this report.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 12:47 AM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
Flight attendants are wearing black ribbons to show solidarity with fallen colleagues in "a tribute to those who never made it home."
updated 7:23 AM EDT, Fri July 25, 2014
Hamas: "Lift the siege." Israel: "End the rockets." The two sides' demands will be difficult to reconcile.
updated 4:53 PM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
CNN's Richard Quest speaks to Malaysia Airlines' Hugh Dunleavy about how the airline industry needs to react to MH17.
updated 4:42 PM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
From Maastricht to Melbourne, and baroque theaters to block-long warehouses, these stores make bookish travelers look stylish.
updated 10:27 AM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
Hamas' tactics have changed -- now the group is using commando-like tactics, says CNN's Ben Wedeman.
updated 2:09 PM EDT, Thu July 24, 2014
A California homeowner's nightmare has become a cautionary tale for those who rent their homes to strangers.
updated 2:57 PM EDT, Wed July 23, 2014
A nun, an AIDS researcher, an athlete and a family traveling on summer vacation. These were some of the victims aboard MH17.
updated 8:21 PM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Prince George isn't your average one year old. He started walking before he was one. Oh, and, he's going to be king -- of 16 countries.
updated 7:36 AM EDT, Mon July 21, 2014
Former President Bill Clinton acknowledges he got "very close" to helping achieve peace in the Middle East.
updated 2:21 AM EDT, Fri July 18, 2014
In an ambitious plan to upgrade urban India, Prime Minister Narendra Modi says he will build 100 "smart cities" across the country.
CNN joins the fight to end modern-day slavery by shining a spotlight on its horrors and highlighting success stories.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT