Home World Pakistan mosque bombing survivors traumatised but undeterred | News

Pakistan mosque bombing survivors traumatised but undeterred | News

by News Desk
0 comment

Peshawar, Pakistan – Naib Rehman lies in a hospital bed with plaster wrapped around his leg. The 44-year-old recalls that a massive blast in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar shook the mosque as he stood with 300 other worshipers for afternoon prayers.

At least 100 people were killed, mostly police officers, and more than 225 injured in Monday’s suicide bombing, as attacks by armed groups have increased.

Rehman, who works in the police’s telecommunications department, told Al Jazeera: “I was standing with my friends when the blast blew me away. Just as I was trying to get my bearings, within seconds the whole roof was gone. collapsed,” he said. .

“Luckily I found a way out and crawled out, but my leg was badly injured,” Lehmann said. Like most of the wounded, he was taken to Lady Reading, the city’s main hospital.

Rescue workers clear debris from the mosque attack site [Abid Hussain/Al Jazeera]

Lehmann said he was determined to continue.

“I’ve lost some friends, but that doesn’t deter me,” he said while lying with seven other patients on the ward. “Go back to work. This is my duty. I will not fear this attack.”

Prime Minister Shebaz Sharif condemned the attack and promised “stern action”. Authorities have announced an investigation into the explosion in a high security police precinct.

“The scale of human tragedy is unimaginable,” Sharif tweeted after visiting Peshawar. “This is nothing less than an attack on Pakistan.”

A faction of Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), also known as the Taliban of Pakistan, claimed responsibility for the attack, but a TTP spokesman later denied involvement in the blast.

A ceasefire between the TTP and Pakistan collapsed last year, and the TTP has stepped up its attacks on Pakistani security personnel since then.

Yashwa Tariq, a 28-year-old constable, was on duty in Peshawar Monday afternoon when he received a call from a friend telling him that his house next to a mosque had been damaged in an explosion.

“My heart sank,” said Tariq as he hurried home. He described what he found as rubble and utter chaos.

“All the neighbors and friends were trying to remove the debris with their bare hands,” he said. “I managed to find my son who was injured and covered in dust and couldn’t open his eyes.”

Interactive on Pakistani attack

Tariq’s wife, sister and grandmother were trapped under a collapsed roof in another room. A police constable managed to get his son out and rushed him to Lady Redding Hospital, praying for the rest of the family to survive.

His wife, son and sister did, but his maternal grandmother, Rasheeda Bibi, was killed.

“My wife has broken both legs,” Tariq told Al Jazeera. “Her sister has a scar on her head. Her son is suffering from trauma. Her grandmother died. There is no place to go.

Several other houses next to the mosque where the police live were also damaged.

The impact of the explosion was so severe that the roof of the mosque’s main chapel where nearly 300 worshipers were about to begin their prayers collapsed.

Kashif Aftab Abbasi, the chief police officer in Peshawar, told Al Jazeera that an initial police investigation had caused the explosion to have been caused by a suicide bomber and that the majority of the deaths had been caused by a collapsed roof. I have confirmed that it has been found.

More than 90% of those who died worked for the police.

The explosion at the Police Rhine Mosque was the first large-scale attack in Peshawar since the Islamic State in Khorasan state attacked a Shiite mosque in March, killing more than 60 people.

Lady Reading Hospital spokesman Muhammad Asim said the situation at the facility on Monday was “overwhelming” as ambulances carried large numbers of the dead and injured.

Police constable Yasir Khan, who, unlike Rehman, lives in Police Lines, a safe area of ​​Peshawar with important government facilities, said the incident shook his confidence.

“We are aware of the attacks on police and security officials,” the 29-year-old man told Al Jazeera, standing near the mosque’s rubble. I could never have imagined that an attack would take place on the premises.It is very well guarded.”

Kasif Aftab Abbasi on the left
Senior Police Chief Kashif Aftab Abbasi said most of the deaths were caused by the collapse of the roof of the mosque. [Abid Hussain/Al Jazeera]

He said he never made up his mind to quit his job. “This is the job that feeds us. I said my wife’s duties come first.”

Kamran Khan, a government teacher, said he rushed to the blast site inside the police station when he saw the news of the blast on television. His brother Irfanullah and cousin Shafiq worked in the police station.

His brother was among those killed while his cousin was hospitalized at Lady Reading Hospital.

“We were eight brothers and Irfanullah was the third,” Khan said. “He worked as a government teacher like me for a long time, but he always aspired to wear a uniform.”

Irfanullah, who joined the police in 2010, has five children, two sons and three daughters.

“I was trying to stop him from joining the army,” Khan said. I want them to serve their country and honor Irfanullah’s name.”

Abid Hussain is a digital correspondent for Al Jazeera in Pakistan.he tweets @abidhussayn.

You may also like

Leave a Comment

Copyright ©️ All rights reserved. | Canadian Trends