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At least 100 killed, dozens more injured in blast at Pakistan shrine

Terrorists have targeted shrines of Sufi saints in the past.

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Sehwan

At least 100 people have been killed and dozens wounded in a suicide bomb attack on a shrine in Pakistan, according to police. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the attack.

“At least 72 are dead and over 150 have been injured,” senior police officer Shabbir Sethar told Reuters, adding that the death toll is likely to rise.

Later, Rasool Baksh, a senior officer from the Sehwan police station, told local media the death toll had reached 100.

Military units are airlifting the wounded to nearby hospitals, according to Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor, the spokesperson for Pakistan’s armed forces.

“The loud explosion took place inside the complex of the shrine near the gate,” Assistant Superintendent of Police Rashid told Geo News.

The area is located far from any hospital, with the nearest medical complex located 40 to 50 kilometres from the site of the blast.

Large crowds of people, from different parts of the province, were gathered at the shrine when the blast took place.

Devotees throng to the shrine of the revered Sufi saint every Thursday to participate in a dhamaal and prayers.

According to reports, the explosion took place after devotees had gathered inside the premises of the shrine.

A high number of casualties were feared because of the crowd of people gathered at the shrine.

The wounded were being shifted to hospitals in Jamshoro and nearby areas.

Terrorists have targeted shrines of Sufi saints in the past.

In November, dozens of people were killed and more than 100 got injured in a suicide blast in Shah Noorani shrine near Hub in Balochistan’s Lasbella district. Additional Deputy Commissioner Lasbella Tariq Mengal had said that 500 to 600 people were in the shrine at the time of the blast.

The attack in Sehwan on Thursday is part of a recent wave of terrorist attacks in the country, the fifth blast in less than a week targeting innocent people.

On Sunday, a suicide attack in Lahore killed 14 people and wounded over 60 others.

On Wednesday, three suicide bombers targeted Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the adjoining tribal areas leaving around leaving seven people dead.

One of the incidents occurred in Peshawar where a suicide bomber riding a motorbike hit a vehicle carrying civil judges, while two other suicide bombers blew themselves up at separate locations in Mohmand Agency.

—This is a developing story and will be updated as further reports are received

World

Heavy rains, landslides kill 5 in Sri Lanka

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People look at the rough sea on a bridge as rainy clouds gather above during the monsoon period in Colombo, Sri Lanka May 21, 2018. (Image Credit- Reuters)

Colombo, May 21: At least five people have been killed and seven are missing as heavy rains and strong winds caused havoc in Sri Lanka, the Disaster Management Centre (DMC) said on Monday.

The deaths were reported from the eastern district of Trincomalee and in the lower central hills of Badulla, Xinhua news agency reported.

Three people were killed by lightning, one perished in a landslide, while the fifth death was the result of a fallen tree, said DMC officials.

Over 9,000 people were affected by the adverse weather while hundreds of families were evacuated from their homes as the Meteorology Department warned of more rains in the coming days.

DMC spokesperson Pradeep Kodippili said five major rivers were at spill level and those living in low areas were evacuated to safer levels.

He said floods were also reported from the Ratnapura district in the Sabaragamuwa province and a landslide warning had been issued for Kalutara, Kegalle, Ratnapura, Badulla, Nuwara Eliya, Galle and Kurunegala.

“The police and tri forces are all on standby and assisting in relief efforts. We request the people in low areas to move to safer locations,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sri lankan Education Ministry said schools in the rain affected areas in Sabaragamuwa province will remain shut on Monday and Tuesday.

Sri lanka is facing its annual southwest monsoon, with the Meteorological Department warning of more rains in several districts across the country in the coming days.

“Very heavy falls, about 150 mm, can be expected at some places in Sabaragamuwa, Western provinces and in Galle and Matara districts,” the Meteorological Department said.

Over 200 people were killed and 78 people missing when the southwest monsoon caused severe floods and landslides across Sri lanka in 2017.

IANS

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Germany wants to strengthen multilateralism with China: Merkel

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German Chancellor Angela Merkel has said her country wants to strengthen multilateralism with China and she is looking forward to her visit to China next week.

Merkel will visit China next Thursday and Friday at the invitation of Chinese Premier Li Keqiang. It will be her first trip to China after re-election and the 11th as the German chancellor, Xinhua news agency reported.

Merkel said in a podcast published on Saturday that as Germany and China have agreed on regular political dialogue and intergovernmental consultations, she went to China to conduct these talks on average once a year.

Germany and China have carried out very close cooperation within G20, Merkel said, adding that during her upcoming visit the two sides will talk about bilateral relations, rule of law, China’s development, economy and other international affairs.

“We want to strengthen multilateralism. And that will play a role in our discussion,” said Merkel.

Merkel will also visit Shenzhen, an economic hub in China’s southern Guangdong Province.

“I am glad that I’m going to Shenzhen this time as well. I have regularly visited provinces in China, not just the capital. I am again and again aware of the dynamics and the extent to which China is developing,” Merkel said.

The German Chancellor said she was very interested in visiting Shenzhen where China’s economic opening-up began and where there are many German companies.

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Royal Wedding: Prince Harry, Meghan Markle marry at Windsor Castle

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New Delhi, May 19: It’s the most anticipated wedding of the year: Prince Harry married US actress Meghan Markle in a ceremony at St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle here on Saturday (May 19).

prince harry Meghan Markle

Meghan became the first royal bride to walk herself up the aisle at a royal wedding. She was met halfway by Prince Charles, the Duke of Cornwall, who walked her down the aisle of the Quire of the chapel. Her father Thomas Markle was unable to attend due to health issues.

The marriage between Harry, who is sixth in line to the throne, and Meghan, an American actor who lived for years in Toronto, has drawn intense interest worldwide.

Among the 600 celebrity guests invited to the St. George Chapel were internationally acclaimed Indian actress Priyanka Chopra, Oprah Winfrey, George and Amal Clooney, David and Victoria Beckham, Elton John, Tom Hardy, James Corden, James Blunt and Carey Mulligan among others.

Tennis star Serena Williams and rugby star Jonny Wilkinson were also present.

The ceremony took place in presence of Queen Elizabeth II, her husband Prince Philip, Prince William, his wife Catherine, Prince Harry’s uncle, Earl Spencer; the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson; and Catherine’s sister Pippa Middleton.

Watch all the Live Updates of Royal Wedding here: 

Here comes the beautiful royal bride:

Handsome groom:

Harry and Markle becomeDuke and Duchess of Sussex on their Wedding Day: Queen Elizabeth II bestowed the dukedom on her grandson in the morning, with his wife-to-be automatically becoming a duchess. Prince Harry’s titles will be Duke of Sussex, Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel.

“The Queen has today been pleased to confer a Dukedom on Prince Henry of Wales. His titles will be Duke of Sussex, Earl of Dumbarton and Baron Kilkeel,” according to the royal statement.

“Prince Harry thus becomes His Royal Highness The Duke of Sussex and Meghan Markle on marriage will become Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Sussex,” it said.

The couple will wed at St. George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.

People flocking the streets to welcome the bride and groom.

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