Suicide Blast Hits Mosque In Pakistan, 23 Dead

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Peshawar: A suicide bomber targeted a mosque in Mohmand Agency’s Anbar tehsil during Friday prayers, leaving at least 23 people dead and 29 others injured, official of the political administration said.

Assistant Political Agent Naveed Akbar said, adding that those injured had been transported to hospitals in Bajaur Agency, Charsadda and Peshawar for treatment.

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A security source confirmed the explosion was a suicide blast. The source said that the suicide attacker blew himself up in the verandah of the mosque. Rescue operations are ongoing.

“The suicide bomber was in crowded mosque, he shouted ‘Allahu Akbar’, and then there was a huge blast,” Naveed Akbar, deputy administrator of Mohmand agency, told news agency Reuters. Another regional official confirmed the blast and said at least 24 people were wounded.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Pakistani Taliban in particular routinely attack soft targets such as courts, schools and mosques. The army launched an operation in June 2014 in a bid to wipe out militant bases in the northwestern tribal areas and so bring an end to the bloody insurgency that has cost thousands of civilian lives since 2004. Security has since improved though scattered attacks still take place.

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