ISLAMABAD (AP) — At least two people were killed in an attack Wednesday evening on a mosque in Pakistan's capital belonging to the Shiite Muslim community, in the latest act of violence to target the religious minority.
At least six people were also wounded in the violence, said Ayesha Isani, the spokeswoman at the hospital in Islamabad where the dead and wounded were taken. She also gave the death toll.
Authorities believe a man opened fire on the mosque before throwing a grenade, or possibly before a suicide jacket he was wearing partially exploded, said Islamabad police official Waseem Ali.
A witness who talked with state-run Pakistan television said he was outside the mosque when a man opened fire at guards and then tried to enter. The assailant tried to blow himself up but his jacket malfunctioned and only partially exploded, said the witness, who was not identified.
One of the emergency rescue officials who arrived on the scene to help transport the wounded, Farooq Butt, said security officials were trying to defuse the unexploded part of the suicide jacket.
It was the latest in a string of attacks against Pakistan's Shiite Muslim minority, which Sunni extremists view as apostates. Last Friday, a Pakistani Taliban attack on a mosque in the northeastern city of Peshawar killed 20 people. In January nearly 60 people died in a bombing at a Shiite mosque in the southern city of Shikarpur.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which happened on the edge of the capital near the twin city of Rawalpindi.