Monday, 18 December 2017

Suicide bombers storm church and detonate explosives as congregation worships in Pakistan church attack

Suicide bombers storm Christian church in Pakistan as hundreds of worshippers attended pre-Christmas services



Quetta, Pakistan;  Not one but two suicide bombers have attacked a church in the Pakistani city of Quetta, killing nine people and wounding more than 50.

Sarfraz Bugti, the home minister for the south-western Baluchistan province, said many hundreds of worshippers were attending services at the church before Christmas. He said the attackers clashed with security forces, with one assailant killed at the entrance while the other made it inside.

The Baluchistan police chief, Moazzam Ansari, praised the response of security forces guarding the church, saying the attacker who made it inside was wounded and unable to reach the main building. “Otherwise the loss of lives could have been much higher,” he said.

The Quetta police chief, Abdur Razzaq Cheema, said a search was underway for two suspected accomplices who escaped.


Local television showed ambulances and security patrols racing to the scene while women and children were led out of the church’s main gate.

Islamic State claimed responsibility through its Amaq news agency, saying two “plungers” from the group had stormed the church, without providing further details.

Wasim Baig, a spokesman for Quetta’s main hospital, said three women were among the dead while four women and two children were among 57 wounded.

Aqil Anjum, who was shot in his right arm, said he heard a blast in the middle of the service, followed by heavy gunfire. “It was chaos. Bullets were hitting people inside the closed hall,” he said.

Dozens of Christians gathered outside a nearby hospital to protest at the lack of security.

Pakistan’s president and other senior officials condemned the attack.


“Attack of terrorists on Zarghoon road church in Quetta is condemned. Pakistan’s resolve against terrorism cannot be deterred by these cowardly acts,” Mohammad Faisal, a spokesman for Pakistan’s ministry of foreign affairs, said.

Baluchistan has long been the scene of an insurgency by separatists fighting against the state to demand more of a share of the gas and mineral-rich region’s resources. They also accuse the central government of discrimination.

No stranger to such attacks

Quetta is the provincial capital of Balochistan province. The city has witnessed recent several attacks in the past two years. This was the fifth attack this year.

In October, eight people including seven policemen were killed in a terrorist attack.


Islamic State or Daesh has claimed responsibility for the attack on social media.


Authorities in Pakistan have expressed their concern over the presence of IS in Afghanistan near Pakistan border. Interior Ministry last month issued directives to security forces to strengthen the security of borders following reports that some IS terrorists had entered Pakistan.

Christians make up about 1.6 percent of Pakistan’s 200 million people and have long faced discrimination - sidelined into low paid jobs and sometimes the target of blasphemy charges.

Along with other religious minorities, the community has also been hit by Islamic militants over the years.


“Attack of terrorists on Zarghoon road church in Quetta is condemned. Pakistan’s resolve against terrorism cannot be deterred by these cowardly acts,” Mohammad Faisal, a spokesman for Pakistan’s ministry of foreign affairs, said.










SOURCE



Click here to join our Global non-denominational online community and engage in bible discussions, ask questions, studies, prayer support, engage in the civil debate of Christian doctrines from the scriptures and friendly fellowship.

No comments:

Post a comment

Popular Posts