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Balochistan shrine attack toll reaches 20

The death toll in a suicide attack at a shrine in Pakistan’s Balochistan province has increased to 20 with more than 30 others injured, authorities said on Friday.

The toll was confirmed early Friday morning by the district authorities, reports Dawn news.

The explosion took place on Thursday evening at the entrance to the Pir Rakhel Shah dargah in Fatehpur, a small town in Jhal Magsi district, at a time when scores of people had gathered to pray, reports Dawn news.

A district police officer said the bomber had tried to enter the shrine but a security guard stopped him, after which the attacker detonated his explosives.

Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti told Dawn news that “if he (the attacker) had managed to enter the dargah, the death toll would have been much higher”.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet.

The Pir Rakhel Shah dargah was also attacked in March 2005 when a suicide bomber exploded himself and killed 35 people.

Thursday’s incident was the second deadly attack on a shrine in Pakistan this year.

In February, a suicide bomber killed more than 80 people and injured over 250 in an attack targeting the Lal Shahbaz Qalandar shrine in Sehwan, Sindh.

 

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