Peshawar, January 30
A Taliban suicide bomber blew himself up in a mosque packed with worshippers during afternoon prayers on Monday in the high-security zone in Pakistan’s restive Peshawar city, killing 61 persons and wounding nearly 150 others, mostly policemen, officials said.
The blast occurred inside the mosque in the Police Lines area around 1.40 pm when worshippers, which included personnel of the police, Army and bomb disposal squad, were offering Zuhr (afternoon) prayers. The bomber who was present in the front row blew himself up, officials said. Lady Reading Hospital officials said 61 persons had died so far. However, the Peshawar Police have released a list of 38 victims. There were mostly policemen and security officials among the dead and injured.
Sarbakaf Mohmand, a brother of slain commander of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Omar Khalid Khorasani, claimed that the suicide blast was part of the revenge attack for his brother who was killed last August in Afghanistan.
The outlawed TTP, known as the Pakistani Taliban, has carried out a number of suicide attacks in the past, targeting security personnel.
A police official said a portion of the mosque collapsed and several persons were believed to be under it. The headquarters of the Peshawar Police, Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD), Frontier Reserve Police (FRP), Elite Force and telecommunications department are also located near the blast site. The bomber entered the highly secured mosque inside police lines where four layers of security were in place.
Dawn newspaper said that a number of jawans were still stuck under the rubble. — PTI
‘Revenge attack’ for commander’s killing
Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan called it a revenge attack for the killing of its commander Omar Khalid Khorasani in Aug 2022
Several cops, Army men among dead
- Several of those killed were from the police and Army
- Bomber crossed four layers of security to enter the mosque where 400 cops were among those present
- A similar attack in a Peshawar mosque killed 63 in 2022
- Same group killed 131 pupils at an Army school in 2014
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