Eight people killed as Pakistani Taliban target more candidates
April 29, 2013 -- Updated 0928 GMT (1728 HKT)
Commuters pass under the flags and posters of political parties in Quetta, Pakistan, on Sunday.
- Pakistani Taliban claim responsibility for bombings of candidates' offices
- Group says secular elections are unacceptable
- Pakistan's elections are to be held May 11
(CNN) -- At least eight people were killed Sunday as the Pakistani Taliban continued to attack candidates in that country's upcoming elections, authorities said.
The Pakistani Taliban, in a statement obtained by CNN, took responsibility for the bombings at the offices of candidates in Peshawar and the Orakzai Agency.
The Taliban said it targeted secular candidates, but many parties have been hit by the increasing violence.
"A man cannot be secular and Muslim at a time. These are two different doctrines in nature," the statement said.
The elections in May mark the first time in Pakistan's history that one democratically elected government will give way to another.
2012: History of the Pakistani Taliban
The nation has experienced three military coups, been ruled by generals for half its life, and it remains mired in near-constant political turmoil.
Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud has told Pakistanis to stay away from the elections.
"We are not in favor of democracy, democracy is for Jews and Christians," he said in recent propaganda video.
"They are intended to divide Muslims; we want the implementation of Sharia (law) and for that jihad is necessary," he added.
Both attacks Sunday targeted independent candidates.
Five people died and 22 were wounded by Sunday's explosion in Orakzai, said Dilawar Khan Bangish, police chief of the Kohat District.
In Peshawar, three people were killed and eight wounded, said Khalid Mehmood Hamdani, a senior police official.
The bombings follow three attacks Saturday and one Friday.
The Pakistani Taliban are closely linked with the group's namesake in Afghanistan as well as with al Qaeda. It shares its religious extremist ideology -- but is its own distinct group that wants to replace the Pakistani government with an Islamist one.
Elections are scheduled for May 11.
CNN's Aliza Kassim contributed to this report.
Part of complete coverage on
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1903 GMT (0303 HKT)
For years, Morten Storm moved between two worlds. A radical Islamist turned double agent is lifting the lid on some of the world's best-kept secrets.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1534 GMT (2334 HKT)
What will happen to Scotland's business (not to mention its currency) if they vote to leave?
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1253 GMT (2053 HKT)
The Ebola virus, very deadly and currently without a cure, is fast-spreading throughout the small West African country.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1324 GMT (2124 HKT)
Go to any provincial city in China and you'd be forgiven for thinking the national youth pastimes are online gaming and flirting.
September 10, 2014 -- Updated 1253 GMT (2053 HKT)
ISIS has captured the minds of a new generation of global jihadists. What does it mean for al Qaeda?
September 15, 2014 -- Updated 2232 GMT (0632 HKT)
ISIS has slaughtered hundreds. Now nearly 40 nations have agreed to take the fight to the militants. But what can they do?
September 15, 2014 -- Updated 0851 GMT (1651 HKT)
North Korea calls its human rights a "superior system."
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 0929 GMT (1729 HKT)
In Wenzhou, called the "Jerusalem of China," authorities have demolished churches.
Are you Muslim? What do you want the world to know about your religion?
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1429 GMT (2229 HKT)
A number of Paralympic athletes in Ghana are hoping to use sport to change negative public perceptions.
September 16, 2014 -- Updated 1142 GMT (1942 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
Today's five most popular stories