Over 100 Killed And 40 Plus Injured In A Suicide Bombing Attack At Peshawar Mosque: Pakistan

A Taliban self-murder bomber blew himself up in a mosque packed with worshippers during autumn prayers on Monday in the high-security zone in Pakistan’s northwestern Peshawar megacity, killing at least 46 people and wounding further than 100 others, mostly policemen, security and health officers. The blast passed inside the mosque in the Police Lines area around 1:40 pm when worshippers, which included the police, army, and lemon disposal team – were offering the Zuhr (autumn) prayers. The bomber who was present in the frontal row blew himself up, officers said. Lady Reading Hospital officers said 46 people have failed so far. 

The Peshawar Police have released a list of 38 victims. There were substantially many policemen among the injured. A family of the taken commander of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Umar Khalid Khurasani claimed that the self-murder attack was part of the vengeance attack for his family who was killed last August in Afghanistan. The outlawed TTP, known as the Pakistani Taliban, has carried out a number of self-murder attacks in its history, targeting the security labour force. Supervisor of Police (disquisition), Peshawar, Shazad Kaukab, whose office is close to the synagogue, told the media that the blast passed when he just entered the mosque to offer prayers. He said he luckily survived the attack. 

A police functionary said that a portion of the mosque collapsed and several people were believed to be under it. The bomber entered the largely secured mosque inside police lines where four layers of security were in place to enter the same. Quoting Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Peshawar Muhammad Ijaz Khan, Dawn newspaper said that a number of jawans are still stuck under the debris and rescuers are trying to pull them out. Khan said between 300 to 400 police officers were present in the area at the time of the blast.”It’s apparent that a security lapse passed,” he told the media. Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif explosively condemned the attack, saying the bushwhackers behind the incident “have nothing to do with Islam”. 

“Terrorists want to produce fear by targeting those who perform the duty of defending Pakistan,” he said and pledged that the offerings of the blast victims won’t go in vain. “The entire nation is standing united against the imminence of terrorism.” Additionally, he stated that a thorough plan of action would be advocated to combat the deteriorating law and order situation in unrest-plagued Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and that the civil administration would aid enterprises in enhancing their anti-terrorism capabilities. The attack was denounced by the foreign minister, Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, who said that “terrorist incidents before the original and general selections were relevant.”

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Governor Haji Ghulam Ali condemned the blast and prompted the people to contribute blood for the injured, saying that it would be a “huge favour for the police”. The injured are being shifted to the Lady Reading Hospital, officers said. Sanitarium sources said 13 of those injured were in a critical condition. An emergency has been declared in the hospitals of Peshawar. The sanitarium has appealed citizens to contribute blood for the victims. Security has been beefed up in other major metropolises, including Islamabad, after the Peshawar blast. In Islamabad, security at all entry and exit points of the capital megacity has been increased and gunners have been stationed at “important points and structures.”

Caretaker Chief Minister Azam Khan condemned the attack and offered condolences to the deprived families. Former high minister Imran Khan explosively condemned the terrorist attack in the synagogue . “My prayers and condolences go to the victims’ families. It’s imperative we ameliorate our intelligence gathering & duly equip our police forces to combat the growing trouble of terrorism,” the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf twittered. Last time, an analogous attack inside a Shia synagogue in the Kocha Risaldar area in the megacity killed 63 people. The TTP, set up as an marquee group of several militant outfits in 2007, called off a ceasefire with the civil government and ordered its zealots to carry terrorist attacks across the country.

The group, which is believed to be close to Al-Qaeda, has been criticised for several deadly attacks across Pakistan, including an attack on army headquarters in 2009, assaults on military bases, and the 2008 bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad. In 2014, the Pakistani Taliban stormed the Army Public School (APS) in the northwestern megacity of Peshawar, killing at least 150 people, including 131 scholars. The attack transferred shockwaves across the world and was extensively condemned.

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