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TTP Jamatul Ahrar claims attack on Rawalpindi imambargah

Updated January 10, 2015
Security forces secure the site of the blast in Rawalpindi on January 9, 2015. - AFP
Security forces secure the site of the blast in Rawalpindi on January 9, 2015. - AFP

ISLAMABAD: The Jamatul Ahrar faction of banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) on Saturday claimed responsibility for Friday's bomb attack on an imambargah in Rawalpindi, which killed eight people and wounded 16 others.

The powerful explosion on Friday night in the city triggered chaos as dozens of minority Shias gathered at the imambargah to distribute alms to mark the birthday of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him).

“We claim responsibility of the attack on the imambargah and vow to continue such attacks,” spokesman of Jamatul Ahrar, Ehsanullah Ehsan, said in an email.

Also read: Pindi’s sectarian wounds bleed again

Pakistan has strengthened its own offensive against the Taliban since their attack on Peshawar’s Army Public School on December 16 killed 150 people, 134 of them children.

The country ended its six-year-old moratorium on the death penalty in terror cases last month in the wake of the massacre.

Nine convicted militants have been hanged so far since the de facto ban on capital punishment ended.

To further boost its efforts, the government on Friday announced it was setting up nine military courts to hear terrorism-related cases.