Friday, 13 February 2015

10 killed as militants storm Pakistan Shiite mosque

A Yemeni soldier carries his weapon as the army blocks streets around the presidential palace in the capital Sanaa during fierce clashes between the presidential guard and members of the Shiite Huthi movement. (Mohammed Huwais, AFP)Peshawar - Grenade-toting militants attacked a Shiite mosque in northwest Pakistan on Friday, police said, killing at least 10 people and wounding dozens more, with fighting still ongoing.

The attack comes two weeks after a suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque in southern Pakistan killed 61 people, the deadliest sectarian incident to hit the country in nearly two years.

Senior police official Rana Umer Hayat told AFP several gunmen threw grenades before storming the Imamia mosque in Peshawar, the main city in Pakistan's restive northwest, around the time of the main Friday prayers.

Doctor Mumtaz Khan of the Hayatabad Medical Complex told AFP that at least 10 people had been killed and 63 wounded.

Also read: Pakistan kills 15 tribal rebels in southwest: officials

Senior police official Mian Saeed confirmed the death toll, putting the number wounded at "more than 60".

TV footage showed people running away from the scene, some carrying injured on their shoulders, others limping, as police fired shots and checked people at a barrier.

Witness Muhammad Raza told AFP: "There was a huge explosion, I can see many injured lying in front of me."

An AFP reporter at the scene said he had seen at least 40 wounded.

Pakistan has suffered a rising tide of sectarian violence in recent years, most of it perpetrated by hardline Sunni Muslim groups against minority Shiite Muslims, who make up around one in five of the population.

- AFP

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