Dozens were reportedly killed and another 50 injured in an attack on a Shiite mosque in southern Pakistan on Friday.
It is unclear how many died in the attack. The number of reported fatalities has ranged from 40 to 70.
The attack took place right before Friday prayers started in the city of Shikarpur in Sindh province, said Sharjeel Mamon, the city`s information minister. Besides the 48 killed, 50 were injured.
Hundreds of people rushed to the scene after the blast to try to dig out survivors trapped under the roof of the mosque, which collapsed in the explosion, witness Zahid Noon said.
Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif strongly condemned the killings and vowed to fight terrorism.
Television footage of the aftermath showed chaotic rescue scenes as people piled the wounded into cars, motorbikes and rickshaws to take them for treatment.
The explosion was heard several kilometers away. Children are also said to be among the victims.
“It was a big explosion inside the Imambargah and was set off with a remote device. The intensity if device led to the roof of the make-shift building caving in completely which has led to many deaths,” senior police official Abdullah Mehr said over telephone.
Tens of thousands of Pakistanis have sought shelter at a sprawling refugee camp in a volatile region of Afghanistan after crossing the mountainous border to escape a military onslaught against insurgents.
The Pakistani offensive was launched last June after a militant attack on Karachi`s international airport. The government warned residents to flee, and some 93,000 families-up to 750,000 people- have been displaced inside Pakistan.
“The Taliban come at night to place bombs on the roads, which explode and kill soldiers as well as local people, so then the government comes in to hit them back,” said Shir Azia, a tribal elder from Miran Shah, in North Waziristan.
Afghan officials say these fighters aren`t engaging in combat, but their arrival comes as a robust Taliban insurgency confronts the government in Kabul. Islamic State, which occupies swaths of territory in Syria and Iraq, has also sought a foothold here. A tribal elder from Helmond`s district of Sangin, Haji Abdul Azizi, said he hosted a family of Arabic speakers for a night last week who said they were loyal to the Islamic State militant group.
“They were six men, seven women and two chidren,” he said. “They were speaking Arabic and two of them also understood Pashto.” The women of the group were armed and took turns keeping watch on each other duringthe night, Azizi said.
Three U.S. defense contractors helping train Afghan air force personnel were gunned down at the Kabul airport in what military sources says was an “insider attack.” The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the killings Thursday night.
The attacker in the Thursday incident was a Taliban agent who “had penetrated into the security forces and was waiting for such a target for a long time,” a spokesman for the group, Zabiullah Mujahid, said Friday.
The airport in the Afghan capital is heavily guarded, with one section devoted to commercial aircraft and another area set aside for a NATO contingent.
At least nine people were killed earlier Thursday in the country`s east when a suicide bomber struck at a funeral for victims of a roadside bomb attack.
An increase in so-called insiders attacks in Afghanistan eroded trust between government forces and their international allies in the final years of the combat mission that ended in 2014, prompting foreign forces to scale back interaction with Afghans.
It was unclear whether the Afghan national who authorities said was killed in the attack was the shooter or someone else who worked on the military complex at the airport, where the killings occurred.
A suicide bomber struck a funeral in Afghanistan for the victims of an earlier Taliban attack, killing 16 people and wounding 39, an afghan official said. The attack took place in eastern Laghman province, according to the Local governor`s spokesman, Sarhadi Zwak.
“A suicide attacker detonated himself when he was identified by the police,” said Khawani, the deputy security chief of eastern Laghman province where the attack took place, who goes by one name.
In one attack, 17 people were killed and nearly 40 others wounded. “A services was underway for a police named Sayyeda Jan, who was killed along with three members of his family in a bomb attack earlier on Thursday morning in the provincial capital of Mehtarlam.
The attack took place at around 3:00 p.m. local time in Pahlawan Baba, a locality in Mehtarlam.
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack but suicide bombings are a hallmark of the Taliban`s war against foreign and Afghan security forces, now in its fourteenth year.
The militant group has intensified an offensive with a string of bombings and attacks over the past couple of months as the Afghan National Security Forces assumed the full security responsibility from NATO-led troops after a four-year security transition process ended Dec 31.
Islamic State`s Egypt wing claimed a series of attacks that killed at least 27 security personnel on Thursday in some of the worst anti-government violence in months, after commemorations around the anniversary of the 2011 uprising turned deadly in the past week.
The attacks which happened on Thursday is the deadliest assault on security forces in recent weeks. It targeted the police headquarters of EL-Arish, a military unit and a residential area housing army and police officers.
The source in the province told the state TV earlier that ten mortar shells and a car bomb targeted the North Sinai Security Department headquarters and army detachment 101, noting the attacks destroyed a large part of the department.
The region has been under a dusk-to-dawn curfew since October when militants attacked a checkpoint, killing dozens of soldiers. No group has yet claimed responsibility for Thursday`s attacks.
The U.S. State Department condemned the attack, saying in a statement: “The United States remains steadfast in its support of the Egyptian government`s efforts to combat the threat of terrorism in Egypt as part of our continuing commitment to the strategic partnership between our two countries,”
The military said in the statement on its Facebook page that the attacks were the result of a successful campaign to pressure the militants.