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Thursday, February 23, 2017, 17:50

8 killed in Lahore blast, officials deny second blast

By Xinhua

8 killed in Lahore blast, officials deny second blast
An Pakistani soldier cordons off the site of a bomb attack in Lahore on Feb 23, 2017. At least five people were killed and 30 injured after a blast ripped through a building in an upscale shopping area of Pakistan's Lahore on February 23, officials said, the latest in a surge in Islamist violence. (AFP / Arif Ali)

ISLAMABAD - At least eight people were killed and 21 others injured as a blast hit a restaurant in a commercial area of Lahore, capital city of Pakistan's east Punjab province on Thursday, officials said.

Meanwhile, officials in Lahore denied local reports that another blast hit the same area.

Law Minister Punjab, Rana Sanaullah, confirmed that eight bodies and 21 injured people have been shifted to General Hospital of the city where four of them are in critical condition.

Nayab Haider, a spokesman for the Punjab police, said that the blast was triggered by the detonation of explosive materials in Defense area of the city.

Bomb disposal squad said that a timed device was used to carry out the explosion and an estimated eight to 10 kg of explosives were used in the attack.

The explosion occurred in an under-construction building, located right next to Bombay Chowapatty, a restaurant that serves Indian cuisine.

READ MORE: Suicide bombers kill 5 outside court in northwest Pakistan

At least four vehicles and 12 motorbikes were destroyed in the explosion. Four nearby building were also damaged in the blast.

Heavy contingent of police, army and people from intelligence agencies reached at the blast site and cordoned it off.

The army vacated all the nearby buildings in the market and kicked off a rescue and search operation.

A few days ago the same market was evacuated and snap checked by law enforcement agencies after receiving a bomb threat by some outlawed organization.

READ MORE: Pakistan Taliban claims responsibility for Lahore suicide blast

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet.

READ MORE: Pakistan says foreign hand behind recent terror attacks

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