Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) chairman Bilawal Bhutto Zardari today voiced concern over the security situation in the country ahead of general elections next week and questioned the tall claims of the government and the military that they have "vanquished" the terrorists.
His comments came on a day when the death toll in Friday's suicide bomb attack on an election rally in Mastung in the troubled Baluchistan province rose to 149, making it one of the deadliest terror attacks in Pakistan's history.
Addressing a press conference, he stressed on adequate security for political parties ahead of polls on July 25.
"The reservations shown by political parties in Balochistan in terms of security need to be addressed," he said.
"We were told that terrorists have been vanquished. Incidents such as the massacre in Mastung belies those claims," he was quoted as saying by the Express Tribune.
Pakistan government and the army have repeatedly claimed that their sustained military campaigns against terrorism have broken the backbone of terror groups in the country's lawless areas bordering Afghanistan.
"Security should be the top priority of the caretaker government," Bilawal said.
"The upcoming polls are being contested in an environment of fear," he said while vowing to defeat terrorism through the ballot.
"We will defeat terrorists through the public's vote on July 25," the PPP chairman said.
The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack at a Baluchistan Awami Party rally which injured over 300. Among the 149 killed was the party's provincial assembly candidate Siraj Raisani.
On the same day, there was a bomb attack on a rally of Akram Khan Durrani of Mutahida Majlis Amal (MMA), an alliance of religious parties, in Bannu area of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province in which five persons were killed and over 37 other injured.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)