DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Nov 21 Nine people were killed and 43 others injured when a bomb ripped through a funeral procession here on Friday. The funeral was for Syed

Zahid Iqbal Shahid who

had been killed on Thursday night by gun-

men riding a motorbike.

Just before the funeral, Nazir Hussain, mohtamim of Imambargah Mehtab Bibi Mohallah Hatullah, was gunned down in front of his house.

The killings and the blast are being considered here as acts of sectarian violence. Police said the blast was caused by a 'home-made' device concealed in a bag and placed on a pushcart near the Bannu bus-stand.

“The bomb was detonated with a remote control at around 11am when the procession of thousands of mourners was passing through the area,” they said.

Seven people were killed on the spot and two of the severely injured died in a hospital in Multan. They have been identified as Ali Hussain, Wiqar Hussain, Sajid Ali, Jamial Ahmed, Asif, Hussain Bakhsh, Arif, Elahi Bakhsh and Hasnain. Most of the injured were taken to the district headquarters hospital in Dera Ismail Khan.

The attack sparked an outbreak of violence and shooting in the city and around the hospital where the dead and the injured had been taken. Angry protest

ers set on fire cars and motorcycles, several shops and buildings, a bank branch and a bus terminal.

The protesters burnt tyres and blocked roads. Clouds of thick smoke engulfed the city. Police fired teargas to disperse the protesters.

Sporadic incidents of firing in different areas continued till the filing of this report. Two policemen were injured in firing.

Reinforcements have been called from other districts. Security personnel patrolled the streets and an army helicopter was monitoring the situation.

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