C/O Futures Terrorism Research Note Series Lisa J. Campbell 17 February 2023
On 30 January 2023, a suicide bomber detonated in the front row of a mosque located within a high security area of Peshawar, Pakistan, killing as many as 100 and injuring up to 220 more. The suicide bomber gained access to the secure area by motorcycle and on foot, by dressing as a police officer. The victims were almost entirely police officers who were attending the mosque for daily lunchtime prayers. No terrorist group has laid claim to the attack, but it was likely that of the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) or a close affiliate of the group. The attack follows attempts at peace brokering between the government of Pakistan and the TTP that last failed in late 2022. The mosque attack has exposed significant security issues for Pakistan which should bring the government to issue a drastic overhaul of security measures, awareness, and training, as well as counterterrorism operations. Pakistan has general elections pending in late 2023.