PESHAWAR At least 12 persons including two children were killed and 28 others got injured in Timergira area of Lower Dir when a suicide bomber blew himself up near a mosque when Friday prayer was being offered there. Sources informed that suicide bomber detonated his explosive material when he was just close to the mosque where DPO Dir and other were offering prayer. A portion of the mosque and several vehicles parked nearby were damaged. The intensity of the blast was so severe that it jolted the entire area, while fear and panic gripped once again the dwellers of Lower Dir. Soon after the attack, police and security agencies cordoned off the area and started investigation. Rescue teams and ambulance rushed towards the blast site and started retrieving dead bodies. The injured and the dead were shifted to District Headquarters Hospital, Peshawar. DIG Malakand Idrees Khan told journalists that it was a suicide blast. He said the suicide bomber failed to reach the target due to strict security. The DPO Lower Dir Mumtaz confirmed that 12 people were killed and 28 others were wounded. Two children are also among the deceased. Some of the injured are stated to be in critical state. Meanwhile NWFP Chief Minister Ameer Haider Khan Hoti and others strongly condemned the blast. They said those who were targeting the worshippers could be Muslims. He said that soon the responsible elements would be brought to justice. The CM also ordered a high-level probe into the incident. AFP adds: A suicide bomber rammed a car into a mosque during Friday prayers, killing 12 people in Lower Dir, police said. The explosion struck a mosque next to local police headquarters in Taimergara town in Lower Dir district, the focus of a spring military offensive to oust militants advancing closer towards Islamabad. Muhammad Idrees Khan, Deputy Inspector General of police in Lower Dir, told AFP that the blast hit a mosque next to local police headquarters. Now it has been confirmed that it was a suicide attack. The bomber was riding a car and he rammed his car into the outer gate of the mosque, he said. Local television showed images of a huge plume of smoke rising from a small town in the mountains, while charred cars smouldered beside the blast site. We have received three more dead bodies taking the death toll to 12. There are 35 injured people with us, some of them in a critical condition, said Doctor Wakeel Mohammad Khan, head of main hospital in Lower Dir. The local residents told me that some more dead bodies are laying in the houses. We have declared an emergency in the hospital. The injured included children, he added, but officials were unable to say how many police were killed or wounded in the attack. More than 2,700 people have been killed in attacks in Pakistan since July 2007, with the past three months seeing a surge in suicide bombings targeting civilian and security targets by militants avenging the army onslaught. On December 4, suicide bombers stormed a mosque frequented by army officers in Rawalpindi during Friday prayers leaving 40 people dead in an onslaught of gunfire, grenades and explosions. The last blast hit in the central town of Dera Ghazi Khan on Tuesday, where a suicide car bombing at a busy market killed 27 people.