Taliban’s revenge: 80 killed in Pakistan suicide blasts (Third Lead)May 13th, 2011 - 7:56 pm ICT by IANS
Islamabad, May 13 (IANS) Two suicide bombers blew themselves up at a training centre for Pakistani security personnel Friday, killing at least 80 people and injuring over 100. The Taliban, which claimed responsibility for the attack, said it was in “revenge” for the killing of Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden.
The bombers struck at the Frontier Constabulary in Shabqadar area of Charsadda town, 35 km from Peshawar, in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, killing the new recruits who had completed one year of training and were about to go home on 10-day leave before assuming nationwide duties, Xinhua reported.
The first bomber, riding a motorcycle, detonated his explosive vest near the main gate of the training centre at around 6.10 a.m., reports said.
The second bomber, who too was on a motorcycle, struck about eight minutes later as security personnel were removing the dead and injured from the scene, police said.
The Taliban said the two attacks were to avenge the death of Osama, who was killed by US special forces in Abbotabad May 2.
Provincial minister Bashir Bilour confirmed that 80 people were killed and around 115 were injured.
Over 15 shops and a number of vehicles were destroyed in the deafening blasts.
Constabulary commandant Akbar Hoti said they had tried to take precautions by sending off the security personnal in small batches.
“We were taking precautions, such as sending the personnel on leave in batches of 15. More casualties were caused by the second blast,” Hoti said.
The constabulary - which is under the jurisdiction of the federal government - is one of the major anti-terror forces in the country.
President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani strongly condemned the suicide blasts and said such acts cannot disrupt the country’s anti-terror campaign.
Zardari said the government and the people were determined to defeat terrorism and such gruesome acts cannot deter the resolve of the nation.
Gilani condemned the attack, saying militants have no regard for human life or religion and were “pursuing their own nefarious agenda”.
Reiterating the government’s resolve to fight militancy, Gilani said “such cowardly acts could not undermine the war against these elements”.
The morale of the people is high, providing impetus to the government’s efforts to eliminate militancy and extremism, he said.
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Tags: abbotabad, bashir, batches, commandant, constabulary, gilani, gruesome acts, new recruits, personnal, peshawar, provincial minister, scene police, security personnel, special forces, suicide blasts, suicide bombers, terror campaign, xinhua, yousuf, zardari