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Train Blast Kills 14 in Southwest Pakistan

A bomb has ripped through a passenger train in southwest Pakistan, killing at least 14 people.

Police say Tuesday's blast occurred after the train stopped in the town of Sibi in Baluchistan province.

A spokesman for the United Baluch Army rebel group contacted VOA by phone to claim responsibility for the bombing.

Local officials say an initial investigation shows the remote-controlled bomb was hidden in a passenger's baggage. The blast and subsequent fire sent smoke and flames through at least two rail cars.

Women and children are said to be among the dead. At least 40 people were wounded in the blast, which took place a day after Pakistani security forces said they killed at least 30 separatist militants during a military operation in the Qalat region of Baluchistan.

The southwestern province has been gripped by a low-level insurgency for decades, with ethnic Baluch rebels fighting for greater control over Baluchistan's natural resources or its secession from Pakistan.

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