Up to 50 killed in Pakistan shrine blast

Source:Agencies Published: 2017/2/17 0:30:28

A bomb which ripped through a crowded Sufi shrine in Pakistan Thursday killed up to 50 people, according to officials, the deadliest in a series of attacks to strike the insurgency-wracked country this week.

"Up to 50 people have been killed and more than 60 others wounded," provincial health minister Sikandar Ali Mandro told AFP. A senior police official confirmed the death toll.

The bombing struck the shrine in the town of Sehwan in Sindh province, some 200 kilometers northeast of the provincial capital Karachi.

 Islamic State claimed responsibility on Thursday for the suicide bombing in southern Pakistan, the group's affiliated news agency AMAQ reported.

A police source said that a suicide bomber had entered the shrine and blown himself up among the devotees, adding the shrine was crowded on a Thursday, considered a sacred day to pray at the shrine.

The security situation has deteriorated recently in Pakistan this week, with a powerful suicide bomb attack rocking the Punjab provincial capital Lahore, killing at least 13 people and wounding dozens more on Monday.

Four suicide bombers struck northwest Pakistan on Wednesday, killing six people and unnerving civilians whose growing sense of security has been shaken.

On Monday two members of a bomb disposal unit were killed in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan, when a device they were defusing went off.

Pakistan has seen a dramatic improvement in security since its deadliest-ever extremist attack - a Pakistani Taliban assault on a school in Peshawar in 2014 which left more than 150 people dead, mostly children, and prompted a government and military crackdown.


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