Taliban's Easter terrorist attack targeting Christians kills more Muslims
A suicide attack that killed 72 people in Lahore deliberately targeted Christians at a park, according to the Taliban who claimed the attack, but officials confirmed most of the dead were Muslims.
Dozens of families, including women and children were at the crowded park where Christians had gone to celebrate Easter.
"We carried out the Lahore attack as Christians are our target," Ehansullah Ehsan, spokesman for the Jamaat-ul-Ahrar faction of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, told AFP.
However, most of those killed were Muslim. A spokesman for the Lahore city administration put the number of Christians killed at "10-15" as authorities scrambled to identify the dead.
Rescue spokeswoman Deeba Shahbaz confirmed the death toll had risen to 72 Monday, with 29 children among the dead.
"We had gone to the park to enjoy the Easter holiday. There was a blast suddenly, I saw a huge ball of fire and four to six people of my family are injured. Two of them critical," 53-year-old Arif Gill told AFP.
Pakistan has witnessed widespread instability and chaos as militants from extremists groups routinely carry out attacks against the government.
At least 16 people were killed when another attack ripped through a bus in Peshawar earlier this month.
However, Sunday's attack in the otherwise peaceful cultural city of Lahore comes as a surprise.
Levels of violence in the country have fallen since 2014 when the army launched a major offensive against the Taliban and al-Qaeda in their respective strongholds.