At least eight people, including five police personnel, were killed and 25 others injured early Wednesday in a suicide blast near a Sufi shrine in the northeastern city of Lahore, officials and local media said.
The suspected bomber struck a police patrol van at a checkpoint outside the shrine of Sufi saint Data Gunj Bux, local broadcaster Dunya News reported, quoting officials.
"Eight people including five police personnel are confirmed dead and 25 are injured," Arif Nawaz, police chief of the Punjab province, told reporters.
Nawaz said the blast was act of a suicide bomber who acted alone.
Authorities fear the death toll will rise as several of the injured were said to be in critical condition, the broadcaster reported.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack.
Footage aired by the broadcaster showed the mostly charred police vehicle lying on the road as rescuers shifted the injured and dead into ambulances.
Blood-soaked shoes, caps, pieces of clothing and splintered wood and glass littered the scene.
Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the attack and directed security forces to expedite efforts to bring the culprits to justice, according to a statement from the Prime Minister’s House.
Meanwhile, in a Twitter post, Turkish Ambassador to Pakistan Mustafa Yurdakul said: “Standing together with #Pakistan against any form of terrorism which does not hesitate to show its ugly face even in month of #Ramzan.”
In July 2010, some 24 people were killed in a suicide attack at the same shrine.Anadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.