South Asia

Bomber kills 11 outside mosque in Quetta, Pakistan

Residents gather at the site of a car bomb blast in Quetta on 31 August 2011
Image caption Several cars caught fire after the blast

A bomb attack has killed at least 11 people in the south-western Pakistani city of Quetta, hospital officials say.

The suspected suicide car bomb exploded in a parking area as hundreds of people were leaving a mosque after Eid prayers, a senior police official said.

Police found the remains of the suspected attacker in his car. About 20 other people were injured. Most of the victims were Shia Muslims.

Pakistan is celebrating the festival of Eid after the fasting month of Ramadan.

"It appears that he [the bomber] was not wearing the explosives on his body but he had planted those in the car and detonated [them] when he could not go beyond the parking lot," Quetta police chief Ahsan Mehboob told the AFP news agency.

"Our security was alert, so he could not go beyond the parking, otherwise he might have caused a lot more casualties."

He added that all the dead had been identified by their relatives except the body of the bomber.

Police say that two women and a seven-year-old boy were among the dead. Several cars caught fire after the blast which also damaged nearby houses.

Television footage showed thick black smoke as people ran into the street. Ambulances were taking the wounded to hospital.

Reports say the area where the blast took place is mostly populated by the minority Shia Muslim community.

It is not yet known who carried out Wednesday's attack but sectarian attacks in the past have been blamed on Sunni militants.

Nationalist Baloch militants are also active in the province - which borders Afghanistan - as are militants linked to the Taliban and al-Qaeda.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites