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Blast near Peshawar hotel kills 9

By Sophia Saifi and Zahir Shah, CNN
updated 3:56 PM EST, Tue February 4, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Bomber was at nearby shop before rushing toward restaurant, police say
  • Motive not immediately clear; Pakistani Taliban says it wasn't behind blast
  • "Scores of people lying in blood," witness says

Peshawar, Pakistan (CNN) -- A suicide bomber blew himself up near a hotel restaurant in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar on Tuesday night, killing nine people and injuring more than 30 others, officials said.

The bomber was sitting at a nearby shop before rushing toward the restaurant and detonating his explosives, police official Najeeb Rehmna told reporters.

A witness, Musadiq Ali, told CNN that he fell to the ground or when the blast happened. "I rushed to the spot and saw scores of people lying in blood," Ali said.

Details about the attacker and his motive weren't immediately available. Shaqfat Malik, a bomb disposal unit official, told CNN that the bomber's remains have been sent to a laboratory for DNA testing.

A spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, Shahidullah Shahid, said his group had no connection to the blast.

The death toll was given by Jamil Shah, a representative of Peshawar's Lady Reading Hospital.

Official: Pakistani police raid school occupied by militants

Zahir Shah reported from Peshawar. Sophia Saifi reported from Islamabad, Pakistan.

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