|December 2009 Rawalpindi attack|
|Location||mosque located on Parade Lane, Rawalpindi|
4 December 2009 |
Around 12:00 pm (noon) (PST+5)
|Attack type||Suicide attack|
Template:Pakistan terrorist attacks The December 2009 Rawalpindi attack in Rawalpindi, Pakistan was a terrorist attack on a mosque during Friday prayers on December 4, 2009. The mosque is located near the Pakistan Army's headquarters in Rawalpindi, is surrounded by military houses and is frequented by retired and serving officers.
Five armed suicide attackers opened fire on and hurled grenades at the crowd of about 150 worshippers, gathered for prayers in the mosque located on Parade Lane. Security forces soon arrived on the scene however made no attempts to rescue or engage the terrorists; All five of the militants are believed to have blown themselves up inside the mosque. The area around the mosque was cordoned off and the security forces initiated a search for more attackers in the area. Helicopters were also used.
Approximately 37 people were killed instantly, while 61 others were injured, including women and children. The victims mostly include retired and serving officers. Eyewitnesses reported that the victims were fired upon at close range and the mosque was badly damaged in the attack. The roof of the mosque has collapsed. No group has claimed responsibility. An eyewitness reported the worshippers had to pass through "tight security", including metal detectors to enter the mosque. Senior police official Aslam Tarin suggested the attackers may have entered the mosque by scaling the mosque wall.
The attack has been speculated to be in retaliation against the Pakistan army's campaign into the Taliban stronghold of South Waziristan. Nine officers including a major general Umer Bilal, a brigadier, two lieutenant colonels and two majors were killed in Friday's attack as well as Hashim Masood Aslam, the only son of Lt. Gen Masood Aslam who is the commander of XI Corps (Pakistan).  General Muhammad Yousaf former deputy head of the army under Pervez Musharraf was injured in the attack.
Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility for the attack in an email sent to CNN and stated "We once again mention that we are not against the innocent people and the state of Pakistan but against those officers and ministers who are American by hearts and minds and Pakistani just by faces,".
After the attack leading Pakistani Islamic scholar Tahir-ul-Qadri condemned the attacks and said "Suicide attacks are not allowed in Islam, these actions are un-Islamic. . . . The slaughter of human beings in any religion or country, and terrorism in all its manifestations, are totally in contradiction with the teachings of Islam."
- "At least 32 dead as militants strike Rawalpindi". Dawn News. 4 Dec 2009. http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/04-blast-in--rawalpindi-qs-04. Retrieved 04 December 2009.
- Walsh, Declan (4 Dec 2009). "Pakistan militants launch deadly attack on Rawalpindi mosque". The Guardian (London). http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/dec/04/militants-attack-rawalpindi-mosque-pakistan. Retrieved 04 December 2009.
- "Pakistan Rawalpindi mosque attack kills many". BBC. 4 Dec 2009. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/8394694.stm. Retrieved 04 December 2009.
- Pakistan mourns officers, civilians slain in mosque attack, France 24, 2009-12-05
- Mosque Serving Pakistani Military Hit by Attackers, The New York Times, 2009-12-05
- Pakistani Taliban claims responsibility for mosque strike, CNN, 2009-12-07
- In Pakistan, anguish and questions, The Washington Post, 2009-12-6