Bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan.
Bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan. (Photo: Arshad Butt/AP)

After a bombing in the Pakistani city of Quetta killed at least 67 people, many of them lawyers, the Pakistan Bar Council released a statement Monday condemning the attack and calling for a three-day strike in all of the country’s courts.

The statement said that more than 70 lawyers were killed or injured in the attack, which The Associated Press described as a suicide bombing at a hospital in the capital city of Balochistan province in southwest Pakistan. The lawyers had reportedly gathered at the hospital to mourn the death of Bilal Anwar Kasi, president of the Balochistan Bar Association, who was shot and killed earlier in the day.

A faction of the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack and the death of Kasi, who “was popular for campaigning for improvements in the legal community,” according to The Associated Press. Witnesses said the attack took place shortly after Kasi’s body was brought to the hospital.

The Pakistan Bar Council statement called on the Pakistani government to compensate the families of the victims. In addition to calling for the three-day strike in courts throughout Pakistan, the group announced a week of mourning.

“The federal and provincial governments of Pakistan have miserably failed to protect the life and liberty of the citizens of Pakistan, in particular lawyers,” the statement said.

Lawyers have been targeted in terrorist attacks in Pakistan in the past. In 2014 suicide bombers killed close to a dozen lawyers and judges at a court complex in the capital city of Islamabad. Earlier this year , another suicide bomber attacked the entrance to a different court, killing 11 people. In the Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, at least two other lawyers have been killed in recent months, Pakistan’s English-language newspaper, Dawn, reported .

Reuters reported earlier this year that Pakistan had been talking to several lobbying firms in Washington, D.C., as it tries to improve its relationship with the United States. The country had previously given U.S.-relations work to Locke Lord Strategies, the lobbying arm of Locke Lord, which had strong ties with the former prime minister, Benazir Bhutto.

Contact Nell Gluckman at ngluckman@alm.com or on Twitter: @nellgluckman

After a bombing in the Pakistani city of Quetta killed at least 67 people, many of them lawyers, the Pakistan Bar Council released a statement Monday condemning the attack and calling for a three-day strike in all of the country’s courts.

The statement said that more than 70 lawyers were killed or injured in the attack, which The Associated Press described as a suicide bombing at a hospital in the capital city of Balochistan province in southwest Pakistan. The lawyers had reportedly gathered at the hospital to mourn the death of Bilal Anwar Kasi, president of the Balochistan Bar Association, who was shot and killed earlier in the day.

A faction of the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack and the death of Kasi, who “was popular for campaigning for improvements in the legal community,” according to The Associated Press . Witnesses said the attack took place shortly after Kasi’s body was brought to the hospital.

The Pakistan Bar Council statement called on the Pakistani government to compensate the families of the victims. In addition to calling for the three-day strike in courts throughout Pakistan, the group announced a week of mourning.

“The federal and provincial governments of Pakistan have miserably failed to protect the life and liberty of the citizens of Pakistan, in particular lawyers,” the statement said.

Lawyers have been targeted in terrorist attacks in Pakistan in the past. In 2014 suicide bombers killed close to a dozen lawyers and judges at a court complex in the capital city of Islamabad. Earlier this year , another suicide bomber attacked the entrance to a different court, killing 11 people. In the Balochistan province, which borders Iran and Afghanistan, at least two other lawyers have been killed in recent months, Pakistan’s English-language newspaper, Dawn, reported .

Reuters reported earlier this year that Pakistan had been talking to several lobbying firms in Washington, D.C., as it tries to improve its relationship with the United States. The country had previously given U.S.-relations work to Locke Lord Strategies, the lobbying arm of Locke Lord , which had strong ties with the former prime minister, Benazir Bhutto.

Contact Nell Gluckman at ngluckman@alm.com or on Twitter: @nellgluckman