UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Thursday condemned the reported use of a minor to carry out a suicide attack on an army recruitment centre in north-west Pakistan.
"The Secretary-General strongly condemns today’s suicide bombing. He is appalled by the reported use of a minor to commit this terrorist act," said Ban's spokesperson Martin Nesirky.
On Thursday morning, a boy wearing a school uniform entered the Punjab Regimental Center in Mardan while Pakistani soldiers were drilling in the ground of the military training facility.
The minor walked into the compound and blew himself up as troops were carrying out routine exercises. The blast caused the death of at least 27 recruits and injured several others.
The UN Secretary-General extended his condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government of Pakistan. Ban's Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict also expressed concern over the use of a minor to carry out a terror attack.
"I am deeply distressed by the use of a young boy in a suicide attack today in Pakistan and condemn those who manipulate or kill innocent children to achieve political goals," Radhika Coomaraswamy said.
Special Representative Coomaraswamy added that Thursday's suicide attack was an unfortunate reminder of the changing nature of war in which civilians are forced to participate or targeted.
"I urge all parties to conflict everywhere to protect civilians and keep children out of the fighting," Coomaraswamy concluded.
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