Taliban faction claims responsibility for Pakistan park bombing which has killed 65 people

Exact number of killed and injured is still rising

Taliban faction claims responsibility for Pakistan park bombing which has killed 65 people

Image: Google Maps

Updated: 19.50

A faction of the Taliban has claimed responsibility for a suicide bomb attack in Pakistan which has killed at least 65 people and wounded 300 others outside a park in the eastern city of Lahore.

The explosion took place in the parking area of Gulshan Iqbal Park, just a few feet away from some children's swings.

The group says Christians were the target of the explosion, who were gathering to celebrate the Easter holiday.

Many families were leaving the park when the blast occurred.

Eyewitnesses said they saw body parts strewn across the parking lot in the wake of the attack.

Television footage shows children and women crying as rescue officials, police and bystanders carry the injured to ambulances.

The death toll is expected to rise as many of those injured are in a critical condition.

Superintendent Mustansar Feroz said most of the dead are women and children.

Lahore is the capital of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's political heartland of Punjab, the biggest and wealthiest province in Pakistan.

The country is currently battling a Taliban insurgency, criminal gangs and sectarian violence.

In 2014, Pakistan launched an offensive against Taliban and affiliated jihadist fighters in North Waziristan, seeking to deprive them of safe havens from which to launch attacks in both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

The attack follows a bus bombing in Peshawar on 16 March in which 15 people died and another 40 were wounded.

The blast was set off by an improvised explosive device planted under a seat of the vehicle.

The bus was transporting government employees from nearby towns to provincial offices in Peshawar.