South African team agrees to play in Karachi

November 14th, 2007 - 2:47 am ICT by admin  
The News quoted sources as saying that the match would take place as scheduled on October 29.

The security officer of the South African team was given a briefing at the office of the Home Secretary. He was informed in the briefing that one more grade has been added to the security for the South African team on which the security officer expressed his satisfaction.

The South African team had expressed its reservations over playing in Karachi after the bomb blasts during the rally of Benazir Bhutto in the city.

However, after increasing one more grade to security, the security officer of South Africa agreed to play the match in Karachi.

Last Thursday, two explosions went off a minute apart shortly after midnight near Karsaz close to the vehicle Bhutto was travelling in.

“The blasts hit two police vehicles which were escorting the truck carrying Bhutto. The target was the truck,” said a senior Karachi police official.

The attack reportedly bore the hallmarks of al Qaeda and resembled assassination attempts by militants linked to the terrorist network on President Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz in recent years.

The Pakistan Interior Ministry has confirmed the deaths of 70 people in the attack.

Officials at six hospitals in Karachi reported over 130 dead and about 600 wounded, making it one of the deadliest bombings in Pakistan’s history.

Bhutto was leading the procession to Qaid-e-Azam’s mausoleum, where she was to give a speech. However, after the two explosions, she was rushed to the safety of Bilawal House in Karachi’s uptown Clifton area.

According to witnesses, the bomber tried to enter the inner security cordon of the PPP workers around Bhutto, but was stopped. He then set off the explosion.

The second blast originated from a golden-coloured Pajero parked on the road, witnesses added.

Earlier, Intelligence reports had warned of threats of suicide attacks against Bhutto by militants linked to al Qaeda, the Taliban and Baitullah Mehsud. (ANI)

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