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Suicide bomber kills 32 in mosque in Pakistan

At least 32 people have been killed, and almost 150 are injured after a suicide bomber struck a mosque in Pakistan.

A Taliban suicide bomber detonated his vest while worshippers were just about to begin their afternoon prayers in northwest Pakistan, Peshawar.

Worshippers included personnel of the police, army and bomb disposal squad, who are believed to have been the target of the attack.

Peshawar police chief Muhammad Ijaz Khan told local media that between 300 and 400 police officials were in the area at the time of the blast.

The explosion’s impact collapsed the roof and one wall of the mosque and injured many, said Zafar Khan, a local police officer. Lady Reading Hospital has declared an emergency and told the BBC they were still receiving those wounded during the explosion.

A brother of one of the founding members of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Umar Khalid Khurasani, claimed that the attack was part of the revenge attack for his brother, who was killed last August in Afghanistan.

Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif condemned the bombing, saying the attackers behind the incident “have nothing to do with Islam” and is urging its party workers to donate blood to save the lives of those injured.

“Terrorists want to create fear by targeting those who perform the duty of defending Pakistan,” he said. “The entire nation is standing united against the menace of terrorism.”

The TTP have rebelled in Pakistan for the past 15 years, fighting for stricter enforcement of Islamic laws and releasing jailed members. Attacks have been rising since November last year after a ceasefire with the government broke down.

In 2014, six gunmen affiliated with the group carried out a terrorist attack on the Army Public School in Peshawar.