Security official and rescue workers collect evidence at the site of a bomb blast in Peshawar February 4, 2014. (REUTERS/Fayaz Aziz)
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Eight people were killed and 42 injured Tuesday when a suicide bomber blew himself up outside a Shiite-run charity hotel in Pakistan's northwestern city of Peshawar, officials said, in an apparent sectarian attack.The blast in a Shiite neighbourhood of Peshawar came as a prominent Shiite scholar was gunned down in the same part of the city on Tuesday morning, in what also appeared to be a targeted sectarian killing.The blast occurred at a time when Pakistan's elected government had offered negotiations to the Pakistani Taliban, who have wedged a bloody campaign against the state by attacking government installations and carrying out suicide blasts in places of worship and markets.The Pakistani Taliban moved to distance itself from the blast.Pakistan is rife with sectarian clashes, with Sunni militant groups linked to Al-Qaeda and the Taliban often attacking gatherings by Shiites, who make up some 20 percent of the country's mainly Muslim population.
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