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Last Updated: Friday, 25 May 2007, 08:28 GMT 09:28 UK
India mosque blast suspect held
Mecca Masjid (Photo: Andhra Pradesh Tourism)
The Mecca Masjid is one of India's biggest mosques
Police in the southern Indian city of Hyderabad have detained a man in connection with last week's deadly bomb blast at a historic mosque.

The 39-year-old Muslim man is the first person to be held in the case.

Police questioned another man in the eastern state of Jharkhand on Monday, but no arrests were made.

At least 14 people were killed in the explosion during Friday prayers at the Mecca Masjid, one of India's biggest mosques, and in subsequent rioting.

Security tightened

Police said the suspect was detained in the town of Jalna, in the western state of Maharashtra.

They say they believe he may have supplied the explosives used in the attack.

Person injured in the mosque blast
Many people were injured in the attack

Meanwhile, a week after the blast, police have stepped up security near the mosque for Friday prayers.

About 4,000 police officers and armoured vehicles have been deployed to guard the mosque, located near the city's landmark Char Minar gate.

At the entrance to the compound, police are frisking worshippers.

At least nine people were killed and dozens more hurt in the blast at the mosque, Hyderabad police commissioner Balwinder Singh told the BBC.

Another five were killed when police opened fire on a crowd of protesters near the mosque. The blast took place as thousands of Muslims were ending Friday prayers at the Mecca Masjid.

Hyderabad is one of the biggest cities in southern India and has a large Muslim population, many of whom live in the congested old city where the mosque is located.

Last year more than 35 people were killed after bomb attacks near a mosque in the western state of Maharashtra. It is still not clear who carried out those attacks.


SEE ALSO
Bomb hits historic India mosque
18 May 07 |  South Asia
In pictures: India bombing
18 May 07 |  In Pictures
Indian town buries bomb victims
09 Sep 06 |  South Asia
Country profile: India
18 Apr 07 |  Country profiles
Timeline: India
22 Feb 07 |  Country profiles

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