ISLAMABAD, Pakistan — A bomb blast killed at least 65 people in the southwest city of Quetta on Saturday in what appeared to be the latest episode of sectarian violence against the country’s beleaguered Shiite Muslim minority.
The explosion occurred near a market crowded with shoppers in a Shiite-dominated neighborhood, local and federal government officials said. Authorities believe the blast was caused by a remote-controlled bomb planted in a water tanker. Women and children were among the dead, police said, and at least 175 more people were injured, some of them critically.
[Updated at 9:39 a.m., Feb. 16: This post has been updated to reflect a rise in the death toll from 50 to 65, and an increase in the number of wounded to 175. In addition, the parked vehicle in which the bomb exploded has been identified as a water tanker.]
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. Shiites angrily protested the bombing, burning tires on the street and hurling stones at passing police vehicles. Shiite leaders called on members of the sect to launch a strike in Quetta on Sunday.