News / Asia

Death Toll in Pakistan Church Bombing Rises to 81

Pakistani Christians stage a protest outside the All Saints Church after two suicide bomb attacks on Sept. 22, 2013.
Pakistani Christians stage a protest outside the All Saints Church after two suicide bomb attacks on Sept. 22, 2013.
VOA News
Officials in Pakistan say the death toll from a twin suicide bombing outside a historic Christian church has risen to 81 while Christians protest the attack at sites across the country.

Three new deaths were reported Monday, a day after the bombs exploded at the All Saints Church in the northwestern city of Peshawar. Hospital officials said many of the 120 people wounded in the attack were in critical condition.

The attack was one of the deadliest against Pakistan's Christian minority. Protesters blocked roads Monday and spoke out against the violence, calling for authorities to provide better protection.

Several hundred worshippers were leaving the church to receive food on a lawn outside when the two explosions went off. Among those killed were 34 women, seven children and two Muslim police officers who had been posted outside the church.

A wing of the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing, saying it would continue to target non-Muslims until the United States stopped drone attacks in the country's remote tribal region.

Pakistani intelligence officials said the latest drone strike came Sunday when missiles hit a pair of compounds in the North Waziristan tribal area, killing six suspected militants.

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned what he called the "cruel" attack in a statement, saying it violated the tenets of Islam.

In Italy, Pope Francis led several thousand people in a prayer for the victims. Those who carried out the attack, he said, "took the wrong choice, one of hatred and war.''

The bombing coincides with a broader wave of attacks this year on religious minorities, including Shi'ite Muslims.

The attacks are mostly orchestrated by Sunni extremist groups, although some have also been claimed by the Pakistani Taliban.

Pakistan Church Bombing Kills at Least 78i
X
September 23, 2013 4:29 AM
At least 78 people have died and more than 120 wounded in a suicide attack against a church in northwestern Pakistan. A number of women and children are among the victims of Sunday’s violence, being described as the deadliest ever assault on the country’s Christian minority.

You May Like

ASEAN Ministers Set to Push for South China Sea Agreements

According to documents obtained by VOA Khmer, ministers will stand up for 'freedom of navigation, unimpeded lawful maritime commerce, trade and over flight' More

Puerto Rico Defaults on $58M Debt Payment

Payment was due Saturday, default is first in country's 117 years as a United States possession More

Turkish Public Fears Jihadists More Than Kurds

Turkey facing twin threats of terrorism by Islamic State and PKK Kurdish separatists, says President Erdogan’s ruling AK Party More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Bashy Quraishy from: Copenhagen
September 23, 2013 4:20 PM
We strongly condemn suicide attacks in Pakistan, that killed 80 and wounded 120 innocent people

These latest horrendous suicide attacks on a famous Protestant All Saint's Church in Kohati gate area in Peshawar- North of Pakistan has resulted in the tragic death of 80 innocent persons while 120 are wounded. Most of them are women and children who came with their families to attend the Sunday services. Kohati Gate area is one of the sensitive localities in Peshawar, where at least three churches and several Shia places of worship are located.
This cowardly act is not only an attack on the Christian minority group in the country but is directly against the integrity, inter-religious nature and traditions of the land.
Pakistani politicians – right from Prime Minister, Minister for Interior and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government as well as intellectuals and public were quick to strongly and vehemently condemn the terrorist attack targeting Christians in Peshawar.
While all these official condemnations are timely, the Pakistani authorities must protect peaceful minorities against such future attacks and show practical solidarity with the Christian and other ethnic and religious communities, which are often targeted and suffer undeserved fate.
All peace loving people around the world are mourning this loss and share the anguish, pain and grief of the families of the victims.
If such acts of terrorism against the public are not dealt with, Pakistan would suffer on all fronts – materially, spiritually, politically - and would move slowly towards anarchy and civil strife.

Bashy Quraishy
Secretary General - European Muslim Initiative For Social Cohesion - Strasbourg
bashy@mail.dk
0045 40154771

Tariq Sundoo
Chairman – Pakistan-Denmark Friendship Society – Copenhagen


by: drhuman from: pakistan
September 23, 2013 3:53 PM
well, no doubt lip service is the only thing service offered to us by our politicians but these attacks occur in response to that intense war going on in that area.intensifying war would only result in punishing the poor, innocent people rather than those corrupt politicians who are actually to be blamed for not implementing law and order in the country properly. a pakistani!

by: Godwin from: Nigeria
September 23, 2013 12:34 PM
Lip service to these attacks avail nothing. Concrete action plan should be laid out to tackle this menace. For all you know, some of these leaders who issue statements "strongly condemning" these attacks sometimes have made their list of statements in advance in notebooks from where they pick out one to be published in their name as their contribution to condemning terrorism. It's not true, it is falsehood for which they deserve punishment.

The war on terror should be intensified. For instance, Pakistan knows who the terrorists are, (imagine Osama bin Laden in Abotabad) and an ultimatum to the tribal regional heads to produce the bad eggs for definite penalties in case of failure would have gone a long way in curbing the menace.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Communityi
X
Sharon Behn
August 03, 2015 2:23 PM
A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Iraqi Yazidis Fear Death of Their Community

A year ago on August 3, Islamic State militants stormed the homelands of Iraq’s Yazidi minority, killing hundreds of men and enslaving thousands of women. The scenes of desperate Yazidi families crowding on the top of Sinjar mountain without food or water spurred Kurdish fighters into action, an emergency airlift and the start of the U.S. airstrike campaign against the Islamic State Sunni extremists. VOA's Sharon Benh reports from northern Iraq.
Video

Video Bangkok Warned It Soon Could Be Submerged

Italy's Venice and America's New Orleans are not the only cities gradually submerging. The nearly ten million residents of the Bangkok urban area now must confront warnings the city could become uninhabitable in a few decades. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from the Thai capital.
Video

Video Inclusive Gym Gets People With Disabilities in Fitness Spirit

Individuals with special needs are 58 percent more likely to be obese than the general population. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, they also have an increased likelihood of anxiety, depression and social isolation. But a sports club outside Washington wants to make a difference in these people's lives. With Carol Pearson narrating, VOA's June Soh reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Special Olympics Show Competitors' Skill, Determination

Special Olympics competitions will wrap up Saturday in Los Angeles, and the closing ceremony for athletes with intellectual disabilities will be held Sunday night. In a week of competition, athletes have shown what they can do through skill and determination. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Shooter’s Grill: Serving Food with a Touch of the Second Amendment

Shooter's Grill, a restaurant in Rifle, Colorado, attracts visitors from all over the world as well as local patrons. The reason? Waitresses openly carry loaded firearms as they serve food, and customers are welcome to carry them, too. VOA's Enming Liu and Lin Yang paid a visit to Shooter's Grill, and heard different opinions about this unique establishment.
Video

Video Despite Controversy, Business Owner Continues Sale of Confederate Flags

At Cooter’s, a store in rural Sperryville, Virginia, about 120 kilometers west of Washington, D.C., Confederate flags are flying off the shelves. The red, white and blue battle flag, with 13 white stars representing the Confederate states, was carried by southern forces during the U.S. Civil War in the 1860s. The South had seceded from the Union over several key issues of disagreement, including slavery. VOA’s Deborah Block has the story.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

VOA Blogs