Lahore attack, 9 victims laid to rest

Posted on 09 March 2010 by PakBee - Total hits: 2,506

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LAHORE: Nine of the 13 victims, who died in today’s car bomb blast in Lahore, were laid to rest on Monday night.

The funeral prayers of eight victims, including six policemen, were offered at Police Line. On this occasion, IG Punjab Tarim Salim Dogar said an inquiry team has been formed to probe the terror attack.

Earlier in the day, a suicide bomber rammed his explosive-laden car into a building where police interrogate high-profile suspects in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore, killing at least 13 people and wounding 61 others, including women, officials said.

The attack shattered what had been a relative lull in major violence in Pakistan.

The attack also showed that rebels retain the ability to strike the country’s heartland, far from the Afghan border regions where al Qaida and the Taliban have long thrived, despite army offensives aimed at wiping them out.

The authorities have found the head of the suicide bomber.

No group immediately claimed responsibility, but suspicion fell on the Pakistani Taliban and allied militant groups.

Those groups are believed to have been responsible for a wave of attacks which killed more than 600 people starting in October, including several in major Pakistani cities. More recent attacks have been smaller and confined to remote north-west regions near Afghanistan.

The latest explosion comes amid reports of a Pakistani crackdown on Afghan Taliban and al Qaida operatives using its soil. Among the militants said to have been arrested is the Afghan Taliban’s number two commander, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.

The bomb went off outside a Punjab province police building, police official Zulfikar Hameed said. TV footage showed a huge crater in the ground where the blast seemed to have originated.

DCO Lahore said that 800 kilograms of explosive material was used in the attack.

Police official Chaudhry Shafiq said 13 people had died. Of the 61 people wounded, several were in a critical condition.

Hospital official Jawed Akram said the dead included at least one woman and a young girl, apparently part of a group heading to a school. Several women were among the wounded.

Interior Minister Rehman Malik painted the attack as sign of desperation from militants whose “backs have been broken” by the army. “They are taking guerrilla actions but gradually it is decreasing and they are being arrested and in the coming days they will have no chance,” he said.



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