Archive for the ‘Attack upon Mosques by Muslims’ Category

At least 30 killed, 100 wounded in twin blasts at Dera Ghazi Khan shrine

April 3, 2011

UpdateBombs kill 42 at shrine in Pakistan | Los Angeles Times | April 3, 2011, 11:16 a.m. Reporting from Islamabad, Pakistan— Two suicide bombers killed at least 42 people at a shrine in central Pakistan on Sunday, the latest in a series of attacks on places of worship linked to sects opposed by militants.

The blasts took place at the Sakhi Sarwar shrine in Dera Ghazi Khan – (File Photo)

 

‘Fatal’ blasts at Pakistan Sufi Sakhi Sarwar shrine

BBC || 3 April 2011 Last updated at 13:57 GMT

A Muslim shrine in Pakistan has been hit by two explosions, with unconfirmed reports of casualties.

Officials told reporters at least five people had been killed and 30 more injured in the blasts at a shrine in the Dera Ghazi Khan district of Punjab.

Initial reports said the explosions struck a shrine belonging to Sufis – a minority branch of Islam regarded as heretical by hardliners. Militants attacked another Sufi shrine last year, killing six people.

The latest blasts hit near the Sakhi Sarwar shrine, and devotees were reportedly among the dead and wounded. Thousands of people had been marking the annual festival of Urs at the time of the blasts.

There is no indication of who carried out the attack, although one official said he suspected suicide bombers.

Dawn reports from Multan :

MULTAN: An emergency official says the death toll from a pair of suicide bombings at a shrine in Pakistan has risen to 30.

Thousands of people were visiting the shrine in Dera Ghazi Khan district in Punjab when the bombers struck Sunday.

Emergency coordinator Natiq Hayat says 30 people have been killed and 100 wounded.

Militants believe visiting shrines is against the spirit of Islam and have carried out such attacks in the recent past.

Courtesy: BBC | DAWN.


Nowshera mosque (Sufi Shrine) bombing ‘kills ten’ in Friday Prayer

March 4, 2011

People gather after the bomb blast at the shrine in Nowshera. PHOTO: AFP

Terror strikes Pak mosque at Friday prayers; 10 killed

Peshawar, March 4, 2011

A heavy explosion took place in a mosque in the NW region, damaged the local houses also. — Photo by Reuters

The blast took place near the mosque in Nowshera’s Akbarpura area when food was being distributed to the poor after midday Friday prayers, a Reuters report said.

A shrine is also situated near the mosque.

Ten worshippers, including a child, were killed and 30 others injured when a powerful bomb blast ripped through a mosque within a Sufi shrine at Nowshera in northwest Pakistan today.

The explosion targeted the mosque inside Akhun Punjo Baba mazar (shrine) in Akbarpura area of Nowshera, about 15 km from Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa capital Peshawar.

Scores of people were offering Friday prayers at the mosque while hundreds had gathered to take food from a ‘langar’ or community kitchen. Ten worshippers, including a child, were killed, the police said.

The blast ripped through the mosque just after prayers - Photo BBC

At least 30 others were injured and the condition of eight was described by the officials as serious.

The injured were taken to hospitals in Nowshera, Pubbi and Peshawar. A witness told Geo News channel that the blast occurred just after the prayers ended. “The blast occurred within the mosque,” he said.

He estimated that over 1,000 persons were present in the shrine. No group has claimed responsibility for the blast. The explosion was heard from several kilometres away.

Reports said the blast was caused by a remote controlled bomb hidden in a cupboard within the mosque.

Footage on television showed caps and shoes strewn within the mosque. Windows were blown out by the blast, which also caused extensive damage to the walls of the mosque.

Witnesses said many worshippers were hit by shrapnel. They added that there was almost no security at the shrine complex.

The Pakistani Taliban are opposed to the practice of worshipping at Sufi shrines and consider it “un-Islamic”. The Taliban have claimed responsibility for several recent attacks on Sufi shrines in cities across Pakistan, including Lahore and Karachi.

President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani condemned the bomb blast in the mosque.

In a message, Zardari described the attack as an “abhorrent act” and said its perpetrators were the enemies of Islam.

“The government would continue to take a firm stand against extremist and terrorist elements across the country and would not be cowed down by such acts of violence,” he said. Nowshera has been targeted by militants in the past too.

On June 12, 2009, at least six persons were killed and over 90 injured when a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden truck into a mosque within an army supply depot in the city. — PTI & Agencies.

Blast outside police post kills 7 in Pakistan

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — A powerful explosion targeting police in Pakistan‘s troubled northwest killed three officers and four civilians Thursday (3rd March,2011) police said.

The attack happened in the Hangu area, just outside the tribal regions along the Afghan border where al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters have long operated, said senior police official Rasheed Khan. It underscored the continued strength of the militants, despite army operations against them.

The bomb was hidden in a vehicle in a residential area where a small police station was located. It went off as a police vehicle carrying officers drove by, Khan said. The blast also wounded 30 people and damaged around a dozen houses, he said.

The U.S. has pressed Pakistan to eliminate hide-outs used by Islamist insurgents, saying they threaten not only American and NATO troops in Afghanistan but also the stability of nuclear-armed Pakistan itself.

But even as Pakistan has carried out some operations against militants, it has found itself challenged on other fronts that threaten to bring down the weak civilian government, notably a struggling economy.

After months of delaying it, the government this week raised fuel prices 9.9% because of spikes in international markets spurred by strife in the Middle East and North Africa.

The price increase has angered opposition parties and even some allies of the ruling party, who have urged the government to reverse the hike. Earlier this year, the ruling party narrowly avoided a collapse of its governing coalition over another attempted fuel price hike.

Public transportation workers in the southern port city of Karachi went on strike over fuel prices Thursday. The strike crippled much of the city, which is Pakistan’s most populous with 18 million people as well as its main economic hub. Many schools were closed.

Irshad Bukhari, the president of the Karachi Transport Union, said more than 25,000 buses and other vehicles stayed off the roads. Millions of commuters could not travel as a result, he said, expressing confidence they supported the strikers.

“People respond to our strike call because it is not only the transporters’ problem but also the people who have to bear the cost of higher fares,” he said.

Courtesy : Reuters || AFP || AP || PTI || Agencies.

Suicide bomb attack on Friday prayer kills at least 50, hurt 100 in Darra Adam Khel Mosque

November 5, 2010

  • A local official said 11 children were among the dead
  • The roof of the mosque collapsed with the force of the explosion

At least 50 killed in blast in Darra Adam Khel

Friday 5th November 2010 | Ziqa’ad 27, 1431|| Source : Dawn News, AFP.

PESHAWAR: A suicide bomb tore through a Pakistani mosque during weekly prayers on Friday, killing 50 people and bringing down the roof, trapping victims under pulverised rubble.

The attack in the volatile northwest was the deadliest in two months. Dozens of people were critically wounded and officials feared the toll could rise.

The carnage wrought havoc in Akhurwall village, part of the semi-tribal northwest area of Darra Adam Khel about 140 kilometres west of the Pakistani capital Islamabad.

A local official said 11 children were among the dead and television footage showed villagers digging graves within hours of the attack, determined to bury the dead in keeping with Muslim custom before nightfall.

Although there was no immediate claim of responsibility, a local elder blamed the Taliban and suggested that the bombers could have been targeting members of a pro-government militia set up to thwart the extremists.

“The number of dead is 50 now. There is a possibility it might rise further,” local administration official Gul Jamal Khan told AFP.

“The number of wounded is more than 100. The dead include 11 children. Some of the bodies are beyond recognition.”

Shahid Ullah, district administration chief of the northwestern garrison town of Kohat, said earlier that more than 40 people had been killed, but warned that the death toll was likely to rise.

“More than 70 are wounded and most of them are in a critical condition and have been taken to hospital.”

Ambulances and private volunteers rushed to take the victims to hospital in Peshawar, the main city in the northwest.

Television footage showed an elderly bearded man wearing a traditional white shalwar khamis drenched in blood limping into casualty while a woman shrieking in grief beat her hands against her head.

A private car sped up to the main Lady Reading Hospital with a volunteer sitting next to a body in the boot.

Khalid Umarzai, a regional administrator, said the bomber entered the mosque from the back during the main prayers.

“The roof of the mosque collapsed,” he told Geo television. “It was a suicide attack.”

Local tribal elder Sohbat Khan Afridi blamed the Taliban, saying Akhurwall is the home of Wali Mohammad, who formed a tribal militia in 2007 to rise up against the militants.

The Taliban and the militia, which is known locally as a lashkar, clashed repeatedly in the area but this year reached some kind of compromise in which blood money was paid to the Taliban, Afridi said.

“Taliban are believed to be involved in this attack,” he said, declining to go into further details on the alleged deal.

Umarzai suggested the attack could have been retaliation for military operations in the Darra Adam Khel area targeting militants.

“An operation is going on by the army and Frontier Corps (paramilitary) in the Darra Adam Khel area. We had been expecting such attacks.”

Around 3,800 people have been killed in suicide attacks and bombings, blamed on homegrown Taliban and other extremist networks, since government troops stormed a radical mosque in Islamabad three years ago. – AFP

Courtesy :

Important reading : Attacking shrines and the culture of peace.

by  Husham Ahmed

Blast kills eight at Baba Farid’s shrine in Pakpattan during Fajr prayers

October 25, 2010

Baba Farid’s shrine in Pakpattan blast toll rises to eight

LAHORE : 25th Oct. 2010 : A bomb exploded outside the Dargah Hazrat Baba Farid Ganjshakar (shrine of Baba Farid, the holy sufi saint of 12th Century) in Pakpattan early Monday morning, killing at least eight people, including two women and injuring thirty others. The explosion occurred during Fajr prayers near the eastern gate of the shrine in Pakpattan, 190 kilometres from Lahore, our sources reported. The bomb was planted in a milk container on a motorcycle, city police chief Mohammad Kashif told Reuters by telephone. “According to initial reports, two unidentified men dressed in shalwar kameez came on the motorcycle and parked it near the gate minutes before the blast,” he said. The explosive device was remote-controlled.

At least a 100 people have been reported to be present at the time of the blast. The injured were taken to the District Headquarters hospital in Pakpattan. At least eight injured people were said to be in critical condition. According to the Regional Police Officer, the shrine was shut down following the blast and security forces had cordoned off the area. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the latest attack but Taliban militants have in the past attacked Sufi shrines.

The chairman of the Ruet-i-Hilal Committee, Mufti Muneebur Rehman said the government had failed to provide adequate security to shrines in Pakistan.

In one of the deadliest strikes, a bomb blast in July at the Data Darbar in Lahore killed more than 40 people. Eight people, including two children, were killed in an attack at the Abdullah Shah Ghazi shrine in Karachi on October 8.

Source : Reuters and Agencies.

Peshtakhara Bala Mosque blast on Friday.11 killed 30 injured in two terror attacks in Pak.

October 24, 2010

Officer, soldiers among 11 killed in two terror attacks in Pak, one upon paramilitary convoy and one upon mosque.

ANI REPORT

Peshawar: A lieutenant-colonel, five soldiers and five civilians were killed in bomb attacks on a paramilitary convoy in Orakzai Agency as well as a mosque near Peshawar.

Lt-Col Mohammad Yousaf and five soldiers were killed, while two were injured in the convoy attack, the Dawn reported.

Although the area was cordoned off and a search operation was carried out, no arrest could be made.

In another incident, at least five people were killed and thirty injured in the bomb attack on the main mosque of Peshtakhara Bala near Peshawar. Most of the injured were young men and children.

Peshawar Police Chief Liaquat Ali Khan told reporters that the explosive device was placed beside a pillar in the veranda, and was detonated by a remote control.

He noted that while security had been beefed up around all the mosques in bazaars and congested areas, securing such places in villages was almost impossible.

He said that the attacker apparently entered the mosque when worshippers were gathering for Friday prayers. The explosion took place at about 1.55 pm when people had started leaving. In view of the situation, people should set up local peace committees, keep an eye on suspicious people and provide information about their movement to police, he added.

Senior provincial minister Bashir Ahmed Bilour said that terrorists, who were in disarray because of action taken against them, had started attacking innocent people in places of worship.

The government was determined to continue to mount pressure on terrorists till their elimination, he said, while announcing a compensation of 300,000 rupees for each deceased and 100,000 rupees for the injured.

Cantonment Circle SP Shafiullah Khan disclosed that a search operation had been launched in the area close to Khyber Agency.

ANI

Courtesy : AP||ANI||DAWN.