Battle rages as rebels storm Pakistani mosque

2015-02-13 13:31
Police stands at the feet of two Shi'ite Muslim men lying on the floor after an attack, (File, AFP)

Police stands at the feet of two Shi'ite Muslim men lying on the floor after an attack, (File, AFP)

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Peshawar - Grenade-toting militants attacked a Shi’ite 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 Shi’ite 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.

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 Shi’ite Muslims, who make up around one in five of the population.

Read more on:    pakistan  |  security

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