Muharram in Pakistan: bomb during a Shiah procession
Peshawar (AsiaNews/Agencies) - A roadside bomb exploded while a Shiah procession was passing by. The attack occurred in the town of Dera Ismail Khan, in an area with large number of Sunni militants. The bomb was placed in a trash can and left seven dead and 17 injured. The police have placed many cities of Pakistan under surveillance, fearing further attacks during the month of Muharram, the month sacred to Shiahs, who in it memorialize the martyrdom of Ali, Muhammad's son-in-law, the foundation of their tradition.
Two days ago there was another attack in Rawalpindi.
President Asif Ali Zardari has condemned the attack.
The attack today took place in the north-west part of the country, where there are many groups of Sunni extremists linked to al Qaeda. For Sunnis, Shiahs are heretics and must be eliminated.
The Pakistani security services expect more attacks during the month of Muharram, which began on November 15 will last until December 13. These days around the 24th are the culmination of the festival (ashura).
The cities most at risk are Islamabad, Karachi and Quetta. In Karachi at least 5,000 policemen will be engaged in the controls for the next two days.