On 15 March 2015 two explosions occurred minutes apart during morning services at two churches in the city's Youhanabad area, home to more than 100,000 Christians. The two neighboring churches, one Catholic and one Protestant, are located about 500 metres apart.
At least 15 people died and nearly 70 were wounded in deadly bomb blasts outside two churches in the Pakistani city of Lahore on Sunday morning, marking one of the country’s worst-ever attacks on its Christian minority.
More than 70 people were hurt in the explosions, which targeted worshippers attending Sunday mass at the churches in the Youhanabad area.
Violent protests erupted after the blasts, with a mob killing two men accused of involvement in the attacks.
Pakistan's Christian community has often been targeted by militants.
An offshoot of the Pakistan Taliban, calling itself Jamatul Ahrar, has said it carried out the attack.
Witnesses say suicide bombers were responsible for the explosions but police have not confirmed this.
Witnesses of the attack told Reuters that the death toll would have been higher if not for the courage of a guard.
“I was sitting at a shop near the church when a blast jolted the area. I rushed towards the spot and saw the security guard scuffle with a man who was trying to enter the church, after failing, he blew himself up,” said witness Amir Masih. “I saw his body parts flying through the air.”
The guard died as well, he said. It was not clear if the first blast was also triggered by a suicide bomber, Masih said.
Whilst the police failed to arrest the people behind the attacks, scores of Christians ended up in jail on charges of arson, rioting, and damaging state property.
Out of 200 people arrested, charges were laid against 47 people. Since 2015, two Christian defendants have died in prison and four more went on the run.
At least 85 people were killed and more than 100 were severely wounded by bombers at a church in the Pakistani city of Peshawar in 2013, in what is thought to be the deadliest ever attack on the country's Christians.