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12 Killed, 202 Injured In Iranian Mosque Blast

From those famous reporters of fact at Iran’s Fars News Agency:

Iranians officials search inside a mosque after a bomb explosion in Shiraz April 12, 2008.

Iran Blast an Incident

TEHRAN (FNA) – A blast in a mosque in southern Iran that killed at least 12 people on Saturday was not an attack and was probably caused by negligence, a police official said on Sunday.

Fars province police chief Commander Ali Moayeri told FNA “the incident could have happened as a result of negligence since there was an exhibition commemorating the war not long ago.”

“The munitions left at the site may have caused this explosion,” he added.

“The blast may have been caused by explosives left behind from an earlier exhibition commemorating the (1980-88) Iran-Iraq war,” press tv also quoted a police official as saying.

Meantime, the governor general of Shiraz was quoted by IRNA as saying, “Initial surveys about the cause of the blast have proved there has been no bomb involved in the incident and, therefore, there (are) other probable causes.”

Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Seyed Mohammad Ali Hosseini told a weekly press conference on Sunday that “the investigation is underway… there was no firm stance by police right now,” adding “prejudgments about the cause of the explosion must be avoided.”

A bomb blast tore through a Shiite Muslim house of worship in a southern Iranian city last night, killing at least 12 people and injuring more than 202 others.

The death toll is expected to rise above 12 because some of the injured people are in a critical condition.

The explosion shattered shop windows and damaged buildings in a 1-mile area of the ancient city of Shiraz. Ambulances and firefighters rushed to the scene to rescue the wounded, who flooded city hospitals. There have also been appeals for blood donations.

Witnesses said about 800 worshipers were in the mosque when the blast occurred. Many of the injured were in critical condition. Authorities set up a hot line for relatives to find out about casualties. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, and Iranian authorities told news agencies that the blast remained under investigation.

The explosion occurred at a “hosseinyeh,” a Shiite house of worship similar to a mosque but often used for community and religious activities.

FNA reports said that the blast and subsequent fire happened about 8 pm in the men’s section of the mosque while a midranking cleric was delivering a speech about the “misleading and corrupted cults” of the Wahhabi Islamic school that inspires Osama bin Laden as well as the Baha’i faith, another Islamic offshoot, when the blast went off.

The cleric survived attack with slight injuries.

Shiraz, a city of more than 1 million people in southern Iran, is well known for being home to many scholars, artists and poets and for its local craftsmanship of rugs and metalwork. It is about 400 miles southwest of Iran’s capital, Tehran. The city once hosted famous Persian poets.

Few ethnic and religious minorities live in the city.

Bombings are rare in Iran.

Gee, munitions in a Mosque? (Even one that is used for community and religious activities.) How is that possible?

Oh, there were left over from an exhibition.

Yes, we believe that.

This article was posted by Steve on Sunday, April 13th, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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