Published: Thu, May 09, 2019
Global Media | By Garry Long

8 dead in explosion targeting Elite Force vehicle near Lahore's Data Darbar

8 dead in explosion targeting Elite Force vehicle near Lahore's Data Darbar

At least six people are dead after a suicide blast targeted police posted outside the Data Darbar shrine in Lahore, Pakistan, officials told CNN. The target was reportedly an Elite Force police vehicle. However, nature and exact target of the explosion hasn't been ascertained yet. Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the loss of lives in the attack, expressing grief and condoling with the victims' families for their loss. More updates are awaited.

Senior police official Muhammad Ashfaq told a press conference that the security personnel at the shrine were targeted.

According to Rescue 1122, injured have been shifted to Mayo Hospital.

At least 24 people were being treated for injuries, some of whom were in critical condition, he added.

A police investigation has been launched as access to the shrine has been blocked.

A security operation is underway in the area with heavy police presence at the blast site.

The attack was claimed by the Hizbul Ahrar, a splinter group of the Pakistani Taliban, who said they were targeting the police.

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A blue pickup truck then pulled up behind the vehicle. "I'd like to know if anyone has seen these people", Holbrook said. Saturday. "If somebody saw him, if maybe he was walking around in a daze, I'd love to know anything about that".

In Pakistan, Data Darbar is one of the most revered Sufi shrines and is built around the grave of Sufi saint Abul Hassan Ali Hajveri, Lahore's patron saint.

Officials believe that today's attack highlights a need for vigilance by people gathering for worship during Ramazan.

Pakistanis in large numbers visit the shrine, where a pair of suicide attacks in 2010 killed and wounded dozens of people.

"We condemn this cowardly act", he said and also confirmed it was suicide attack.

Lahore police released the initial report of Data Darbar suicide bombing where the suspect has been identified through the CCTV footage.

Major urban centres such as Lahore, Pakistan's second largest city and the provincial capital of its wealthiest province, Punjab, are not immune.

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