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At least 10 killed, 30 injured in Pakistan market bombing




At least 10 people were killed and 30 wounded when a bomb ripped through a crowded Sunday bazaar in a mainly Shiite area of Pakistan’s northwestern tribal region, officials said, with the death toll feared to rise.

The explosion occurred at the Eidgah market in Parachinar, the capital of Kurram tribal district.

“At least, 10 have died and more than 30 were injured,” said a senior police official who requested anonymity.

“A bomb disposal squad has reached the spot and are trying to ascertain the nature of the blast,” he added.

Amjad Ali Khan, the political administrator of the Kurram district, confirmed the incident and the toll.

A doctor at the district headquarters hospital, where the wounded were taken, told AFP most of the injured were in “critical condition” and said the death toll could increase.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but the region is known for sectarian clashes between Sunnis and Shiites, who make up roughly 20 percent of Pakistan’s population of 200 million.

Pakistan has been battling a homegrown Islamist insurgency since 2004 that has claimed the lives of tens of thousands of civilians and security forces personnel.

Overall levels of violence have decreased this year following a nationwide military-led offensive against Islamist extremists across the country, blocking their sources of movement, communication and funding.

There has also been a crackdown on Sunni extremist groups that target Shiites.

In July, the leader of an anti-Shiite group behind some of Pakistan’s worst sectarian atrocities was killed in a shoot-out with police, along with 13 other extremists.

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