Two suicide bombers stormed in southwestern Pakistan church killed nine people

Plain-clothed security officers help an injured man after gunmen attacked the Bethel Memorial Methodist Church in Quetta, Pakistan December 17, 2017. REUTERS/Naseer Ahmed

Vastavam web: Two suicide bombers stormed a packed Christian church in southwestern Pakistan on Sunday, killing at least nine people and wounding up to 56, officials said, in the latest attack claimed by Islamic State in the country.Police guards stationed at the church entrance and on its roof killed one of the bombers but the second attacker detonated his explosives-filled vest outside its prayer hall just after Sunday services began in Quetta, capital of Baluchistan province, said Sarfraz Bugti, the provincial home minister.

Jah said the venue – Bethel Memorial Methodist Church – was on high alert as Christian places of worship are often targeted by Islamist extremists over the Christmas season.“We killed one of them, and the other one exploded himself after police wounded him,” he said.Broken wooden benches, shards of glass and musical instruments were scattered around a Christmas tree inside the prayer hall that was splashed with blood stains.

Kal Alaxander, 52, was at the church with his wife and two children when the attack happened.“We were in services when we heard a big bang,” he told Reuters. “Then there was shooting. The prayer hall’s wooden door broke and fell on us. We hid the women and children under desks.”Pakistani Christians, who number around 2 million in a nation of more than 200 million people, have been the target of a series of attacks in recent years.