Sehwan blast: Pakistan shuts Torkham border crossing with Afghanistan

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 17, 2017 06:48 hrs

[Pakistan], Feb 17 (ANI): Pakistan has shut down the Torkham border crossing with Afghanistan for an indefinite period of time, after at least 70 were people killed and several others injured in a suicide attack on the shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan on Thursday.

"#Pakistan shuts down the Torkham border crossing with #Afghanistan for an indefinite period of time amidst new wave of terrorism: Official," Head of The Express Tribune's bureau for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa & FATA, IftikharFirdous said in a tweet.

Torkham border connects Nangarhar province of Afghanistan with Pakistan's Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

It is the busiest port of entry between the two countries, serving as a major transporting, shipping, and receiving site.

"So far 70 people have been killed and more than 150 wounded," Dawn quoted Inspector General Police Sindh A.D. Khawaja as saying.

The Assistant Superintendent of Police in Sehwan said a suicide bomber entered the shrine through its Golden gate.

The attacker blew himself up after throwing a grenade, which failed to explode, he said.

The explosion took place in the area where dhamaal (a Sufi ritual) was being performed after evening prayers.

A large number of devotees, from across the country, frequented the shrine on Thursdays as it is a popular day to visit Sufi shrines.

Pakistan Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa has also directed that immediate assistance be provided to civil authorities.

Army contingents have been dispatched along with medical personnel.

The shrine is dedicated to Syed Muhammad Usman Marwandia, a 12th century Sufi who was born in Marwand, present day Afghanistan. (ANI)



More from Sify: