At least 30 people were killed and more than 50 others injured when a bomb ripped through a crowded Shia mosque during the Friday congregation in this northwestern Pakistani city, officials said.
A rescue official said the blast occurred at a Jamia mosque in Qissa Khwani bazaar area in Peshawar when the worshippers were offering Friday prayers.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the blast.
Asim Khan, media manager of Lady Reading, said 30 bodies had been brought to the hospital so far, according to Dawn.
As footages emerge from the mosque area, a large contingent of security teams can be seen cordoning off the area. “I opened my eyes and there was dust and bodies everywhere,” witness Shayan Haider told Dawn.
Prime Minister Imran Khan strongly condemned the attack on the imambargah and directed for immediate medical aid to the victims, the Prime Ministers Office (PMO) said in a statement.
In recent months Pakistan has experienced a broad increase of violence. Dozens of military personnel have been killed in scores of attacks on army outposts along the border with Afghanistan. Much has been claimed by the Pakistani Taliban, which analysts say have been emboldened by the Afghan Taliban’s return to power last August.
Pakistan has urged Afghanistan’s new rulers to handover Pakistani Taliban insurgents who have been staging their attacks from Afghanistan. Afghanistan’s Taliban say their territory will not be used to stage attacks against anyone, but until now they have not handed over any Pakistani insurgents.
(With agency inputs)