Leaders condole Pakistan on tanker blast victims; Quake hits

5.5-magnitude earthquake hits Pakistan

ABU DHABI 27 June 2017: President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has sent a cable of condolence to President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Mamnoon Hussain, on the victims of the fuel tanker explosion in southern Punjab province, Pakistan.

The incident caused the death and injury of dozens of people, said Wam.

In his cable, the President extended his sympathy and sincere condolences to the Pakistani President, government and people. He prayed to the Almighty Allah to rest the souls of victims in peace. He also wished speedy recovery to the injured.

Meanwhile, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, also sent similar cables of condolences to the Pakistani President.

More than 140 killed in oil tanker blast in Pakistan; 100 hurt

BAHAWALPUR, Pakistan 26 June 2017: At least 140 people were killed when a lorry transporting oil burst into flames in the Pakistani city of Bahawalpur.

According to reports carried by the BBC, local officials said that dozens of people were badly burned as they tried to collect fuel leaking from the vehicle. Those injured are being treated in hospital, and firefighters are were at the scene tackling the blaze, said Wam.

Unconfirmed reports suggest the tanker had overturned because of speeding. BBC said reports suggest one of the petrol thieves lit a cigarette which may have caused the fiery blast. Eyewitnesses said that some people were smoking at the scene of the accident, which could have started the fire, Pakistan’s Geo TV reported.

The tanker was reportedly carrying 50,000 litres of fuel. As it over-turned, fuels started leaking and people and in and around the area gathered to siphon off as much fuel as they could in this impoverished nation.

Identities of a number of victims may only be established by DNA sampling, as the bodies were badly burned in the incident, reports added.

The nearest burn treatment hospital was some 150km away. Injured were airlifted by military helicopters to hospitals.

There are fears that the death toll could rise further.

5.5-magnitude earthquake hits Pakistan’s north-eastern region

ISLAMABAD: Numerous cities in north-eastern region of Pakistan experienced earthquake tremors early Monday morning, Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) has said.

Citizens in Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar, and surrounding areas in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) felt the tremors around 4:30am local time, right after Fajr prayers on Monday.

The earthquake, which was recorded as 5.5 in terms of magnitude on the Richter Scale as per the Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD), had its epicentre in one of the peaks in the Hindukush mountain range, 50 kilometres from Jurm, Badakhshan, Afghanistan, with a depth of over 250 kilometres.

People in Nowshera, Mardan, and Dir also felt the tremors in the wee hours of the morning.

ALSO READ More than 140 killed in oil tanker blast in Pakistan; 100 hurt

By Sheena Amos