Bethel Memorial Methodist Church Quetta official Facebook
19 December, 2017, 11:44
Provincial Police Chief Moazzam Jah Ansari reported that the first attacker did suicidal attack at the gate to the Bethel Memorial Methodist Church while the second attacker opened fired on worshipers during a midday service.
Government officials told global media that one radical detonated himself at the gate of the church, while another was killed while shooting at worshippers.
ISIS later claimed responsibility for the attack on their Aamaq news agency, saying two "plungers" from their group had stormed the church, without providing further details.
The most fatal attack was the double-suicide blast on a Peshawar church, which killed 85 people in September 2013.
He asserted that had the militants been able to reach the sanctuary without resistance of security forces, the attack could have been even more catastrophic.
Injured include women and children.
CCTV footage released by the police showed the attackers, both carrying guns, approaching the church gates.
A state of emergency has been declared in all the hospitals of the city. Another was shot dead near the church's entrance by security forces, the police chief said.
Prime Minister Shahif Khaqan Abbasi and army chief Gen. Qamer Javed Bajwa condemned the attack.
More than 30 people were injured in the attack. Effective response by LEAs is commendable. "The church was brimming with activity for the pre-Christmas Mass, and we all were very excited to be there, but our happiness has been turned into sadness". The region has been the scene of several deadly attacks in recent years, including the killing of Shiite Muslims by Sunni extremists.
Foreign Office spokesperson Muhammad Faisal condemned the terror attack, saying Pakistan's resolve against terrorism can not be deterred by these cowardly acts of terrorists.
The British Pakistani Christian Association has sent out its officers to help assist families victimized by the attack.
Christians make up at least 2% of the country's population of about 198 million.
The attack was on Bethel Memorial Methodist Church in Quetta, where one ISIS radical detonated a bomb that was strapped to him.
The assault raised concerns about the security of religious minorities, especially Christians, in a country with a dismal record when it comes to the treatment and protection of religious minorities, analysts say.
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