At least 3 killed, 20 injured in explosion near Raiwind

Deputy Inspector General of police Haider Ashraf said the bomb exploded when the police were changing guards at the checkpoint just outside an annual religious congregation, where almost 80,000 people were in attendance. The injured were shifted to the Tehsil Headquarters Hospital, Raiwind, where some of them were listed in a critical condition, triggering fears that the death toll might go up.

He told reporters that three policemen were among the dead.

The DIG said it was apparently a suicide blast, saying the body parts of the bomber have been recovered.

"It is not confirmed yet whether it was a suicide blast or planted device", he said, adding "police personnel" were the target of the blast.

The police camp was set up for the security of an ongoing congregation of Tableeghi Jamaat.

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He also directed to intensify operations of search, sweep, combing and intelligence, while increase security for sensitive installations, educational institutes, places of worships and markets.

The attack took place in the suburb of Raiwind in Lahore, the main town of central Punjab province, near a mosque hosting a religious congregation of some 60,000 people.

In 2016, Lahore, 375km southeast of the capital Islamabad, suffered one of Pakistan's deadliest assaults when a suicide bomber in a park killed more than 70 people, including many children.

At least nine policemen, including an officer, were among the wounded, Ashraf said. Three months earlier, a suicide bombing targeted a Pakistani government census team, killing at least six people in the eastern city of Lahore.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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