A suicide bomber exploded at a mosque in the northern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Monday, killing more than 100 people and several suspects have been arrested.
Peshawar police chief Mohammad Ajaz Khan said more arrests would be made after police launched a major investigation into the attack that left 217 others injured.
Khan added that authorities were still investigating how the attackers entered the mosque. The family, who live in the police compound where the mosque is located, is being questioned as police cannot rule out that the attackers may have been helped by insiders.
Peshawar police chief Moazim Jah Ansari said earlier that police suspected a suicide bomber had used 12 kilograms (26.5 pounds) of explosives.
Footage emerged of the mosque’s destroyed walls, with glass windows and paneling battered in the powerful blast.
Emergency crews scoured the rubble for survivors of the blast, but authorities said what they found were “mostly bodies”.
Monday’s blast showed the deteriorating security situation in Peshawar, the capital of the restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on the border with Afghanistan and a frequent site of attacks by the Pakistani Taliban, known as the Taliban movement (TTP).
There were conflicting accounts of who was responsible for the attack, with TTP officials Sarbakaf Mohmand and Omar Mukaram Khurasani initially saying the blast was “revenge” for the death of TTP militant Khalid Khorasani last year.
But TTP’s main spokesman, Muhammad Khorasani, later denied the group’s involvement in the attack.
Pakistani authorities have yet to confirm either claim.
Human rights groups have condemned the attack, which comes at a difficult time for Pakistan, which is in the midst of a crisis over high living costs and an economy reeling from last year’s devastating floods.