Car Bomb Kills 37, Wounds 141 in Southern Pakistan

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) -

A car bomb exploded outside a mosque on Sunday, killing 37 people and wounding another 141 in a Shiite Muslim-dominated neighborhood in the southern Pakistan city of Karachi — the third mass-casualty attack on the minority sect in the country this year.

No one has taken responsibility for the bombing, but Shiite Muslims have been increasingly targeted by Sunni terrorist groups in Karachi, Pakistan’s economic hub and site of years of political, sectarian and ethnic violence, as well as other parts of the country.

The bomb exploded outside a Shiite mosque as people were leaving evening prayers in Pakistan’s largest city. Initial reports suggested the bomb was rigged to a motorcycle, but a top police official, Shabbir Sheikh, said later that an estimated 100 kilograms (220 pounds) of explosives were planted in a car.

A top government official, Taha Farooqi, said at least 37 people were confirmed dead and 141 more were wounded.

Sunni terrorist groups have stepped up attacks in the past year against Shiite Muslims who make up about 20 percent of Pakistan’s population of 180 million people. Sunni terrorists linked to al-Qaida and the Taliban view Shiites as heretics.