KARACHI -- A suspected suicide bomb shattered Friday prayers at a crowded mosque yesterday, killing at least 14 people and wounding 215 -- the second deadly attack on minority Shi'ite Muslims in Pakistan in the past two months.
Hundreds of Shi'ite youths began burning cars, gas stations, and a government office after the explosion, which left walls scarred by shrapnel and carpets soaked in blood.
Police urged Shi'ite leaders to help quell the unrest in Pakistan's largest city.
The attack occurred shortly after 1 p.m. at a mosque inside a government-run religious school. There was no word on the motive for the attack, which Pakistan's president, General Pervez Musharraf, called a ''heinous act of terrorism."
The Sindh Madrassah tul Islam school, for students ages 4 to 18, has separate mosques for Sunni and Shi'ite Muslim worshipers. Witnesses said the school had let out early, as it does on Fridays. Most victims were adults who came to the mosque for prayers.
Tariq Jamin, deputy inspector general of Karachi police, said 14 people were killed. Dr. Razar Ali said most of the dead and 215 wounded were brought to the Civil Hospital.
Sadir Durrani, a police explosives specialist, said he had found no timing or radio devices, indicating the blast was probably caused by a suicide bomber.
Several survivors described a man in a black robe and black turban who was sitting near the column where the bomb exploded.
Aftab Sheikh, who is responsible for law and order in Sindh Province, blamed antistate elements for the explosion but would not elaborate. Karachi is home to several radical Islamic groups.