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Bomb explosions in 3 Pakistani cities kill more than 20 people.

ISLAMABAD, Nov. 22 Kyodo

At least 15 Shiite mourners were killed and 40 injured in a suicide bomb attack on a religious procession in a Rawalpindi suburb around midnight Wednesday, doctors at three city hospitals said.

The violence followed deadly bomb attacks in two other cities earlier in the day. Two died in Karachi and five in Quetta. The death toll from the attacks in the country thus rose to at least 22.

No one has claimed responsibility. Given the Rawalpindi and Karachi incidents took place near Shiite mosques, investigators were looking into the possibility that extremists of the Sunni majority carried out the attacks in the first month of the Islamic calendar that started Nov. 16.

Major Shiite religious festivities are scheduled for later this week. Attacks on Shiites have often been observed around this time of the year.

The Rawalpindi city police chief said that a suicide bomber detonated a device amid Shiite mourners heading toward a major Shiite mosque in the Dhok Sayedan area of Rawalpindi.

Doctors at District Hospital said 10 bodies had been brought there while five bodies were sent to morgues in the Benazir Bhutto Hospital and Holy Family Hospital.

Police cordoned off the three city hospitals and the site of the bomb blast amid unruly scenes. They hoped to avoid a repeat of what happened in Karachi a few hours earlier, when two successive explosions in the same place killed two people and injured several others, including journalists, security personnel and rescue workers.

In Quetta, a motorcycle-bomb attack on a military vehicle killed five and wounded 15. The provincial government of Baluchistan ordered all educational institutions in the city to remain closed until Sunday.
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Publication:Asian Political News
Geographic Code:9PAKI
Date:Nov 26, 2012
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