Taliban Faction: We Sent Easter Bomber

Death toll in Pakistan attack hits 70
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 28, 2016 2:59 AM CDT
Updated Mar 28, 2016 6:33 AM CDT
Women comfort each other at a local hospital in Lahore, Pakistan, as they mourn over the death of a family member who was killed in a bomb blast on Sunday.   (AP Photo/KM Chuadary)
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(Newser) – A breakaway faction of the Pakistani Taliban has claimed responsibility for a sickening attack that killed scores of people in a park on Easter Sunday. A spokesman for Jamaat-ul-Ahrar tells the AP that the group was deliberately targeting Christians when it sent a suicide bomber to the Gulshan-e-Iqbal park in Lahore. The bomber blew himself up just feet away from children's rides in the busy park. Officials say the death toll has now hit 70, with at least 340 others injured, reports Reuters, which notes that the Jamaat-ul-Ahrar faction once declared allegiance to ISIS before deciding to ally itself with the Taliban again.

Pakistan has declared three days of national mourning after the country's deadliest terror attack since 132 schoolchildren were massacred in Peshawar in late 2014. "I saw body parts everywhere, especially those of young children," a witness to the park attack tells the Guardian. "It was quite haunting, as many of the children's rides were still operating, while there were dead bodies lying all around them." A military spokesman tweeted that those responsible will be brought to justice and "we will never allow these savage inhumans to over-run our life and liberty." (Read more Pakistan stories.)

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