Deaths after Pakistan blast in Karachi

The bomb exploded at the end of a procession for Ashura, the Shi'ite calendar's biggest event.

Deaths after Pakistan blast in Karachi

A suicide bomber blew up a Shi'ite Muslim procession in Pakistan's commercial capital Karachi on Monday, killing at least 22 people.

The bomb exploded on a main road during a procession for Ashura, the Shi'ite calendar's biggest event, despite the presence of thousands of security forces who had been on high alert.

"We have reports of 22 dead and there are dozens of wounded in the blast but we are still in the process of counting," said Javed Hanif, a top city administration official.

Television pictures showed a big cloud of smoke over the scene and reporters said angry worshippers attacked journalists and police and set fire to shops and vehicles.

Karachi police chief Waseem Ahmed appealed for calm. He said the severed head of the suicide bomber had been found.

"I was walking in front rows when the blast went off about 50 metres away and thick cloud of smoke immediately engulfed the entire spot," said witness Moin Rizvi.

Ashura falls on the 10th day of a 40-day mourning period during the Islamic calendar's first month, Moharram, which commemorates the death of Imam Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Mohammad, who was killed in battle in 680 AD in the Iraqi city of Kerbala.


Last Mod: 29 Aralık 2009, 12:37
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