Pakistan Suicide Bomber Kills 23

Posted November 22nd, 2012 at 9:15 am (UTC-5)
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Pakistani officials say a Taliban suicide bomber has killed 23 people near the capital, Islamabad.

Authorities said the bomber blew himself at a Shi'ite Muslim march in the city of Rawalpindi close to midnight after police tried to stop him for a security check. The blast wounded at least 62 others, including several children.

Earlier Wednesday, two blasts near a Shi'ite mosque in the southern port city of Karachi killed at least three people and wounded at least 15 others.

A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for both attacks, saying the terrorist group was targeting Shi'ites because it believes they are “blasphemers.”

Shi'ite Muslims are celebrating the holy month of Muharram and on Saturday will observe the holiest day of the month, Ashura. The holy day commemorates the death of the Prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein, in the seventh century.

Also Wednesday, a bomb attack on a military convoy in the southwestern city of Quetta killed at least four soldiers.

The attacks took place as leaders from Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, and Turkey joined Pakistani officials in Islamabad for a Developing Eight summit meeting to promote trade among the countries.