Islamabad - At least 20 people were killed on Friday when an explosion ripped through a packed Shi'ite mosque in the Pakistani city of Shikarpur and left more than 50 others injured, officials said.
Sectarian violence has been on the rise in Pakistan, where radical Sunni Islamist groups often target mosques frequented by Shi'ites, whom they see as infidels. Shi'ites form about a fifth of the population of around 180 million.
"At least 20 dead bodies and more than 50 wounded people have been brought to the hospital," Shaukat Memon, a doctor at a nearby hospital, told Reuters.
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It was unclear what caused the explosion during Friday prayers in the busy central part of the town, police said.
"We are trying to ascertain the nature of the blast," said Shikarpur police chief Saqib Ismail Memon. "A bomb disposal squad is examining the scene."
Part of the mosque collapsed after the explosion, burying some of the wounded in rubble. Bystanders later pulled them out.