Gunmen ambush police van in Karachi; 4 dead

The death toll for two days of violence has reached around 70.

Karachi: Four elite police commandos were killed and around 35 others injured when their van was ambushed by unidentified gunmen in a troubled area of this
Pakistani port city which has witnessed 70 deaths during violence in the last couple of days.

The police personnel were ambushed late last night in Chakra Goth area of Korangi, but two of the gunmen were captured after being wounded in the ensuing shootout.

"The policemen were in plain clothes when they were
ambushed and retaliated immediately," city police chief Saud
Mirza said.

The gunmen after attacking the van disembarked the
policemen and shot dead four of them before the other
commandos retaliated.

"Around 35 policemen, who were wounded in the ambush,
have been shifted to Jinnah hospital the condition of six is
critical," Mirza said.

The injured included a DSP from Quaidabad.

The incident took place on a day when despite President
Asif Zardari chairing a high level meeting in Islamabad to
discuss the law and order situation in Karachi, the violence
escalated with the death toll reaching 27.

Besides the killings, there were reports of 18 people
missing and gunmen opening fire on public transport in some

Seven vehicles were also torched in different parts of
Karachi as the death toll for two days of violence has reached
around 70.

Most of the killings have been reported in the southern Lyari neighbourhood, a stronghold of the ruling Pakistan People`s Party and now infested by powerful criminal gangs.

Karachi`s worst-affected areas are impoverished and
heavily populated neighbourhoods where most of the criminal
gangs are believed to be hiding.

The independent Human Rights Commission of Pakistan said
800 people have been killed in Karachi so far this year,
compared with 748 in 2010, but unofficially the figure of dead
is said to be around 1200 with 1300 wounded.

In a disturbing trend, since yesterday, many mutilated
and tortured bodies have been found in gunny bags from
different parts of the city victims of apparent ethnic

At least seven bullet-riddled bodies were found dumped in
sacks across the city yesterday and officials said four of the
victims were Urdu-speaking and were killed after having been

Officers said their hands and legs were tied and they
bore several marks of torture.

There were also unconfirmed reports of 12 to 15
passengers in a bus being kidnapped in Sohrab Goth.

Beefing up the intelligence network in Karachi and
working out an arrangement to allow for pursuit of criminals
fleeing the city were among the decisions taken at a meeting
chaired by President Asif Ali Zardari at the presidency.

Governor Sindh Dr Ishratul Ibad and Chief Minister Sindh
Syed Qaim Ali Shah were among those present at the meeting.


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