PAKISTAN

ISIS Claims Bloody Shrine Bombing That Left 88 Dead In Pakistan

A suicide bomber killed nearly 90 Sufi worshippers, heightening tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

PAKISTAN
REUTERS
Feb 17, 2017 at 10:53 AM ET

A bombing in a Pakistan shrine killed dozens and injured hundreds more in an attack that ISIS is claiming credit for.

Thousands of people were gathered at the Lal Shahbaz Qalandar shrine for a weekly Sufi religious ceremony on Thursday, when a suicide bombing tore into the crowd. As many as 88 were killed as of Friday, according to reports by Al Jazeera and others, with 20 children were among the victims. Survivors described bodies strewn across blood-stained marble floors.

This is not the only recent attack on a Sufi religious site in Pakistan: Last November, another bombing in a different shrine killed dozens of people, and ISIS claimed credit for that as well. The latest bombing comes after a week of terrorist attacks across the country — one of which was claimed by the Pakistan Taliban — and Pakistan has vowed to do more about its growing terrorism problem. It closed its border with Afghanistan on Friday, saying many terrorists come from and escape to the neighboring country. Pakistan also gave Afghanistan authorities a list of 76 suspected terrorists it believes the country is sheltering, with a demand that they be sent to Pakistan.

Within its own borders, there has apparently been some progress in the fight. The Guardian says Pakistani officials are claiming to have killed 39 “suspected militants” and arrested 47 people in overnight raids.

“Each drop of the nation’s blood shall be revenged, and revenged immediately,” Pakistan’s army chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa vowed. “No more restraint for anyone.”