2009-10-29 13:34:39

Peshawar, market massacre: 90 dead and 200 wounded women and children among victims

(October 29, 2009) A car bomb packed with explosives struck a market in Peshawar, the capital of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP) on Wednesday, 28th of October. The exploded vehicle contained about 150 kilograms of explosives, has left behind at least 90 dead and 200 wounded. Hillary Clinton, U.S. Secretary of State, on official visit to Pakistan, condemned the attack and called on the government to continue its fight against terrorism. Local sources speak of a massacre of women and children, as the place is popular with mothers because it displays many female articles. The flames originated in the explosion propagated to adjacent shops, burning people trapped inside alive. So far, no one has claimed the attack, but in all likelihood the hand of the Taliban is behind it, say the reports from Pakistan. Peter Jacob, executive secretary of the National Commission for Justice and Peace (NCJP) of the Catholic Church of Pakistan, confirmed the climate of fear that reigns in the country. "Extremists attack civilians and military targets, to do the most damage possible." The condemnation of the attacks was "unanimous" and the nation is "coherent in the fight against terrorism," says the Catholic activist who excludes a "direct link" between the Clinton visit and the carnage of Wednesday in Peshawar. "Violent attacks are taking place with increasing regularity - he says - and you can not tie them to a single episode." The Executive Secretary of NCJP confirms that "there may be other attacks in the near future," so it is even more important "that the military operation is a success: we must show solidarity in fighting terrorism and eradicate extremism from the roots.”

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