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Land trade between India, Pakistan halted after Wagah blast

IANS 03 Nov 2014, 13:17:57 PM IST

Attari/Islamabad: Land border trade between India and Pakistan was halted on Monday following a suicide bomb attack at Wagah in Pakistan that left 60 people dead on Sunday evening.

Customs officials at Attari said that there was no trade activity from either side on Monday following's Sunday's blast that left over a 100 injured. The blast took place at Wagah, just 500 metres from the international border gates between both countries.

They said that the trading activity is likely to remain suspended for another two days.

Hundreds of trucks from both countries carry products, including fruits and vegetables, through the land border trade.

Security on the Indian side remained on high alert following the blast.

The Retreat ceremony done by border guards, Border Security Force (BSF) in India and Pakistan Rangers in Pakistan, has been suspended for three days after a request from the Pakistan side following the explosion.

Inspector General of Police Mushtaq Ahmad Sukhera said an 18-year-old suspected suicide bomber blew up his explosive jacket around 5.50pm in a crowd.

People were returning after witnessing a flag-lowering ceremony with India at the Wagah border.

The blast took place outside a restaurant near the first gate of the venue where the ceremony was held.

The flag ceremony is held daily and is attended by hundreds of people on both the Pakistan and Indian sides.

The victims included three Pakistan Rangers personnel along with 10 women and seven children.

The responsibility was claimed separately by the Jundullah and Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan-affiliated Jamaat-ul-Ahrar outfits.

The Jundallah outfit is based in Pakistan's tribal region along the Afghan border and is believed to be responsible for a number of terrorist attacks in the country.

The group was involved in the September 22, 2013 twin suicide bombing at a church in Peshawar that left 127 people dead and over 250 others injured.