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National

REUTERS & Web Desk
March 31, 2017

Walk-through gates installed at shrine of Sachal Sarmat after Sehwan blast

KHAIRPUR: Security has been enhanced at the shrine of Sindh’s sufi poet Hazrat Sachal Sarmat...

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Blast near Imambargah in Parachinar kills 24, wounds dozens

Blast near Imambargah in Parachinar kills 24, wounds dozens

PARACHINAR: An explosion apparently targeting an Imambargah in Parachinar, in a remote area bordering Afghanistan, killed at least 24 people and wounded dozens, officials said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility but the blast, which took place as people gathered for Friday prayers near the women´s entrance of Imambargah in the central bazaar, follows a series of attacks this year.

A parliamentarian from Parachinar, Sajid Hussain, earlier said the death toll from the explosion had reached 22, with 90 wounded.

He said gunfire preceded the incident, which he described as a suicide attack, adding, "The attack took place in a busy area and a women´s mosque appears to be the target.

"Last month, more than 80 people were killed and dozens wounded in an attack on shrine of Lal Shehbaz Qalandar in Sindh was claimed by Daesh.

In January, at least 21 people were killed when an explosion hit a vegetable market in Parachinar, capital of the Kurram tribal region, where security forces have battled militant groups for years.

The army spokesperson said a military rescue helicopter had been sent to the scene to help evacuate the injured.

Mumtaz Hussain, a doctor at the Agency Headquarters Hospital in the region, said five bodies, including a woman and two children, and more than three dozen wounded, had been brought to the hospital and an appeal for blood donors had been made.

"Patients are being brought to us in private cars and ambulances and we have received over three dozen patients so far," Hussain told Reuters.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the attack and said the government would keep up efforts to "eliminate the menace of terrorism".

In a statement, he said, "The network of terrorists has already been broken and it is our national duty to continue this war until the complete annihilation of the scourge of terrorism from our soil.

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