Suicide bombings rip through two mosques in Pakistan, killing at least 57

Friday, 29 September 2023 - 18:31

Suicide bombings ripped through two mosques in Pakistan on Friday, killing at least 57 people and injuring more than 60 amid events marking the birthday of the Prophet Mohammed, police and health officials said.

No group has claimed responsibility for the blasts, one of which trapped dozens of people under rubble, media said. A surge in militant attacks has raised the stakes for security forces ahead of general elections set for January.

One blast occurred near a mosque in the south-western Balochistan province as worshippers had gathered to commemorate the birth of the Prophet Muhammad.

Balochistan officials have declared a state of emergency in the aftermath of the attack. No group has claimed responsibility for this act of violence.

In addition to the Balochistan incident, a second blast took place near a mosque in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province. Police reported that two suicide bombers and a vehicle loaded with explosives were intercepted in this attack.

While the number of casualties in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa mosque is not yet known, authorities fear that some individuals may be trapped under debris as the roof collapsed during the explosion.

Balochistan, Pakistan's largest province, shares borders with Afghanistan and Iran and has frequently experienced violence from militant groups like the Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and the Islamic State. However, the TTP denied involvement in this recent attack, stating that such incidents are against its policies.

In the past, mosques, schools, and public gatherings have been targeted in attacks, raising concerns about the safety of these locations. Pakistan's security forces recently thwarted an attempt by the TTP to infiltrate the country from Afghanistan, killing three of the group's members.

This tragedy comes after a suicide bombing in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province in July that claimed more than 40 lives during a gathering of a religious political party.

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