ISLAMABAD: The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on Monday strongly condemned a bomb blast that took place in northwestern Pakistan, killing over 80 people and injuring several others, saying that it stands by the people of Pakistan after the attack.
Eighty-three people were killed and over 50 were injured when a blast ripped through a mosque located in the northwestern city of Peshawar on Monday afternoon, during Zuhr prayers, a hospital spokesperson confirmed.
The mosque was located inside a compound where the headquarters of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police is located. Militant groups have stepped up attacks against security forces in Pakistan ever since a fragile truce between the Pakistani Taliban and the state broke down last year.
A senior Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commander claimed responsibility for the Peshawar blast. However, hours after the attack, the TTP released a statement distancing itself from the episode, saying that it did not target the mosque.
"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs expresses the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's strong condemnation and denunciation of the terrorist attack that took place at a mosque in Peshawar, Pakistan," Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
The Kingdom stated its "firm position" against targeting places of worship and shedding the blood of innocent citizens. "The Ministry also affirms that the Kingdom stands by the brotherly Islamic Republic of Pakistan against all forms of violence, extremism, and terrorism, regardless of its motives or justifications."
Saudi Arabia condoled with the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.