Blast Hits Pakistan Security HQ in Peshawar, 35 Dead

World | November 13, 2009, Friday // 08:34|  views

An injured victim of a suicide car bomb attack, targeting the regional headquarters of country's premier intelligence agency Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), is rushed to a local hospital for medical treatment, in Peshawar. Photo by EPA/BGNES

A bomb has hit Pakistan's intelligence agency in the north-western city of Peshawar, killing at least seven people and injuring 35, BBC reported, citing officials.

The blast destroyed much of the three-story building belonging to the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) agency and many cars on the street outside.

The area has been frequently targeted by militants in recent weeks.

Separately, at least 10 people were hurt in a bombing at a police station in the town of Bannu, police said.

Attacks in Pakistan have increased as the army continues its offensive against the Taliban in South Waziristan region.

More than 100 people were killed in a blast at a market in Peshawar more than two weeks ago.

The Peshawar blast occurred at around 0630 (0130 GMT), Pakistani media said.

The attack is believed to have been carried out by a suicide car-bomber.

Many of the wounded were rushed to local hospitals, while security sources said several more could be trapped under the rubble.

Sahib Zada Anis, the head of Peshawar's local government, said most of the victims were civilians.

Pakistani Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani condemned the attack, saying his country's resolve to deal with militancy would not be weakened.

The city has been on high alert for weeks. Schools were closed after the attack.

The last time an ISI building was targeted was in May, when 24 people were killed in a suicide attack in the eastern city of Lahore.

The blast at the Bakakhel police station in Bannu - also in Pakistan's North-West Frontier Province - wounded at least 10 people, a local police official told Pakistani media.

Bannu is close to the tribal region of North Waziristan, a Taliban stronghold.

The latest attacks come one day after 17 Pakistani soldiers were killed in fighting in South Waziristan, in the military's deadliest day since launching a major offensive there in mid October, security officials said.

Analysts have said that ordinary citizens are increasingly being targeted because the militants are cornered and under great pressure from the military.

Despite the mounting death toll, Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani said on Wednesday that the government was "fully committed" to completing the Waziristan offensive and "eliminating terrorism completely".

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Tags: Pakistan, Peshawar


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