Suicide bombings rip through two mosques in Pakistan

STORY: Suicide bombings at two mosques in Pakistan on Friday left dozens dead and more injured, officials said.

It happened as worshipers marked the birthday of the Prophet Mohammad.

The first blast hit in the southwestern Balochistan province, where a district health official said more than 50 were killed.

Dozens more were injured, many of them seriously.

The second attack was in a neighboring province.

Rescue officials say at least five were killed.

The blast reportedly trapped dozens under the rubble.

Witnesses at the site of the first blast said they could see multiple bodies, including children as the injured cried out for help.

The gathering was at a mosque belonging to a sect generally considered more moderate than other hardline Islamic sects.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for either of the blasts.

Militant attacks have surged in Pakistan since 2022, when a ceasefire broke down between the government and the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan - the TTP - an umbrella body of hardline Sunni Islamist groups.

The TTP denied responsibility for Friday's blasts.

Both provinces have also suffered attacks in recent years by Islamist militants aiming to overthrow Pakistan's government.

Attacks have also surged in the run-up to January's general elections but have until now mainly targeted security forces.