Peshawar Police Lines mosque suicide blast: Toll jumps to 83, while 157 injured
At least 83 people were killed and over 157 people were injured, including 27 people officers and other police officials, health and district administration officials said after a suspected suicide explosion rocked a mosque next to the Police Lines in Peshawar on Monday.
During the afternoon prayers that were being held in the mosque, the explosion occurred. At least 200 people were inside the mosque at the time, according to witnesses and officials.
The blast was heard in areas that were relatively far away and was strong enough to break the window panes of nearby buildings. Additionally, it resulted in the collapse of a portion of the mosque’s roof and façade.
An AFP reporter observed as dead bodies were transported in ambulances and bloodied survivors emerged from the wreckage.
Officials were also concerned that the death toll might rise as a result.
Ambulances and rescue workers had rushed to the scene. They claimed that the victims were moved to the nearby Hayatabad Medical Teaching Institute, Lady Reading Hospital, and Khyber Teaching Hospital.
As the firefighters searched for survivors, large pieces of machinery were brought in to remove the wreckage.
Muhammad Asim, a spokesperson for the LRH, stated that the hospital had received 17 bodies and approximately 70 injured people.
He went on to say that approximately ten of the injured were in critical condition and were receiving treatment in the operating room at the moment.
On Tuesday, 14 more bodies were extracted from the rubble and moved to LRH.
However, Asim was unable to provide any details regarding the nature of the injuries sustained by the injured at this time.
In the meantime, Riaz Mehsud, the deputy commissioner of Peshawar, stated that the bodies of 28 people and 150 injured people had been moved to various city hospitals, including LRH, KTH, and Hayatabad Medical Center.
He went on to say that a number of the injured were in critical condition and that the death toll could rise as more people are believed to be trapped beneath the mosque’s rubble.
However, he stated that the police are still conducting an investigation and made no mention of the nature of the blast.
The Police Secretariat and PTCL Colony are both close by, making this location in a highly secure part of Peshawar.
People must cross several police checkpoints to enter the area. Since there is no commercial area within the police lines, only authorized individuals can enter the area.
The funeral prayers of 27 martyred police officers were offered in the police lines later on Monday evening.
Seven rows of coffins lined the ground, which is normally used for police parades and other activities.
Locals, the deceased’s families, and representatives of the district administration and provincial government were also present for the funeral rites.
The Jamaat-e-Islami Parliamentary Leader, Inayatullah, stated that they are concerned that additional individuals may be trapped beneath the mosque’s collapsed debris.
He stated that they are attempting to rescue all of the individuals trapped beneath the debris, though he clarified that they do not yet know the precise number of individuals trapped there.
Pakistani Army units have also arrived to provide assistance.
Riaz Mehsud, the Deputy Commissioner, concurred with this.
He stated that they had recovered three survivors and 18 bodies from the rubble later that evening on Monday.
They think that at least one more person who survived is currently buried under the debris, where a rescue effort is ongoing.
What caused the explosion? Although the police and other authorities have not yet provided an official explanation for the explosion, Inayatullah suggested that it might have been a suicide bombing.
He stated that inside the mosque, officials were discussing the possibility of a suicide bombing and that they could smell burned explosive materials.
Federal Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah stated that it might have been a suicide bombing, despite the fact that the police stated that nothing could be said until the debris was cleared and investigations were completed.
Bomb disposal teams are looking into the possibility of a suicide attack, according to officers, and the blast was said to have come from the second row of worshippers.
Maulana Sahibzada Noorul Amin, the mosque’s prayer leader, was one of the victims identified by authorities as they work to identify the attack’s victims.
He added that the entire area was covered in dust and smoke immediately following the blast, pointing to a security breach.
An additional witness, a police officer, claimed that he was passing by the mosque at the time of the explosion.
He claimed to have witnessed the collapse of the section of the mosque where the prayer leader stood.
He said that around 100 people could gather in this area, but he didn’t know how many were inside.
When asked about security, he stated that there was minimal security outside the mosque, with people being checked in at the entrance and another officer stationed inside.
Attack is condemned by PM Shehbaz Sharif The attack in Peshawar on Monday was condemned by PM Shehbaz Sharif.
He stated that Muslims being brutally murdered went against everything Islam taught.
Shehbaz added that they will develop a strategy to combat the rising terrorism in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa more effectively.
Those who are fighting Pakistan will be destroyed.
Rising terrorism Islamabad has accused the Taliban of failing to secure their mountainous border, allowing terrorists to move back and forth to carry out attacks and evade capture since their return to power in Afghanistan.
According to the Pak Institute for Peace Studies (PIPS), Pakistan witnessed a 50% increase in militant attacks in the western border provinces during the first year of Taliban rule in Afghanistan.
The March 2022 Islamic State bomber in Peshawar, according to detectives, was an Afghan exile who had returned to his homeland to prepare for the attack.