ISLAMABAD: Thirteen people were killed Sunday when a huge explosion ripped through a funeral prayer being held in Pakistan's Peshawar city. The deputy speaker of the provincial assembly left the spot minutes before the blast.
The explosion occurred during funeral prayers in Budh Bher area in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
The deafening explosion spread panic in the area, with the wounded crying out in pain.
Reports varied on the number of injured. While one media report put the figure at 29, another said 31 people were left bloodied.
Geo News reported that Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly Deputy Speaker Khushdil Khan, who also attended the prayers, had left the spot minutes before the blast.
The bomb exploded near a graveyard Dawn quoted police officer Kalam Khan as saying.
Xinhua cited a TV report as saying that the bomb was mounted on a motorcycle.
The area where the bombing took place is known for anti-Taliban 'Lashkars' (volunteers) who support security forces against the militants. It was not clear if any leaders of the peace committee who are routinely targeted by the militants attended the funeral.
A little over a week back, an intelligence official was fatally shot in Peshawar.
On March 2, gunmen opened fire at Bashir Khan, an Intelligence Bureau inspector who was on his way to work on his motorcycle. His 13-year-old son was injured in the ambush.
Pakistan is battling militants, who have viciously struck back.
On Feb 24, three policemen were killed and six injured when three heavily armed suicide attackers went on a shooting spree and hurled grenades at a police station in Peshawar. Hours later, a suspected terrorist was injured while planting a bomb.
The brazen attack was carried out a day after a deadly car bomb killed over a dozen people and injured more than 20 in the city.