Pak: Taliban bomb military Cdr’s house killing 26
Last Updated: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 18:18
  
Islamabad: Targeting para-military forces which recently captured top al Qaeda operatives, Taliban suicide bombers hit the house of a top Pakistan military commander in southwestern city of Quetta on Wednesday, killing 26 people, most of them soldiers and wounding 82 others.

The suicide bombers, who detonated more than 90 kgs of explosives, in and around the house of Deputy Inspector General of the para-military force 'Frontier Corps' (FC), Brigadier Khuram Shehzad, missed him but killed his wife, a colonel and many other soldiers.

"Twenty four bodies have so far been recovered in the twin suicide attack in which the residence of the Brigadier was totally damaged. The DIG himself is critically injured," Duniya television quoted local police chief Hamid Shakil as saying.

The TV channel said more bodies were buried under the rubble.

Two of the dead were children travelling in a rickshaw on the road in front of the house.

Claiming the responsibility for the attack -- first such incident in Quetta -- the Taliban spokesman said it was in revenge against the arrests of some top militants, including Younis al Mauritani and two others.

In the blasts, the first suicide bomber detonated his car laden with 90 kgs of explosives next to a group of Frontier Corps soldiers and officers standing in front of their commander's house, while the second attacker managed to sneak into the premises and blew himself up inside.

The house, located in a highly guarded area of Quetta, capital of Balochistan province, was blown up by the impact of the twin blasts, local police chief Hamid Shakil said.

Local TV channels reported that wife of the Deputy Inspector General Frontier Corps was killed in the attacks, while the Brig was critically injured and rushed to nearby military hospital.

Witnesses said the car-bomber before unloading his lethal fired at the guards outside the complex to create a diversion for his other suicide accomplice to barge into the house.

The channels said the blasts from the explosives was so loud it smashed glasses of nearby houses and destroyed several parked vehicles.

All main markets in Quetta were closed as the powerful blast created panic across the city.

Army and para-military forces arrived at the scene and cordoned off the area.

The blast took place days after the Pakistan army announced the security forces arrested a top al Qaeda leader.

The US had praised the arrest of Mauritani, who was involved in planning and carrying out international operations, according to the Pakistan Army.

Two other senior al Qaeda operatives, Abdul Ghaffar al Shami (Bachar Chama) and Messara al Shami.

PTI


First Published: Wednesday, September 07, 2011, 10:55


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