Suicide bomber targets Pakistani shrine
by Onize Ohikere
Posted 5/08/19, 11:08 am
At least 10 people died and 20 others sustained injuries on Wednesday after a suicide bomber set off a powerful explosion near security forces guarding a popular Sufi shrine in eastern Pakistan. Hundreds of pilgrims were inside the shrine in Lahore, capital of the eastern Punjab province, when the bomb went off.
Television footage showed a heavily damaged police vehicle. “It seems police officers who were doing their routine duty outside the Data Danbar shrine were the target,” Lahore Police Chief Ghazanfar Ali said. Five police officers and five bystanders died, and the death toll could rise as some of the injured remained in critical condition, Ali said.
Sufi Muslims practice a form of Islam often called mysticism that focuses on a spiritual search for God and promotes tolerance. They venerate the tombs of saints—a practice condemned by extremist groups . In 2017, Islamic State (ISIS) killed more than 80 people who gathered at the tomb of a Sufi philosopher to pray in southern Pakistan.
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Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.