The Largest Security-Cleared Career Network for Defense and Intelligence Jobs - JOIN NOW

Military

SLUG: 2-287653 CQ Pak / Attack (L)
DATE:
NOTE NUMBER:

DATE=3/17/02

TYPE=CORRESPONDENT REPORT

NUMBER=2-287653

TITLE=CQ PAK / ATTACK (L)

BYLINE=AYAZ GUL

DATELINE=ISLAMABAD

CONTENT=

VOICED AT:

///// FIXES TO EMBARRASS IN DURRANI ACT OF CR2-287652. /////

INTRO: At least five people have been killed and 45 wounded in an attack on

a church in the Pakistani capital. Ayaz Gul reports from Islamabad.

TEXT: Witnesses say the attackers walked into the church and threw grenades

during a morning service. The Protestant church was filled with about 70

worshipers, including Americans. It is located in a heavily guarded

diplomatic compound very close to the U-S embassy.

Nasir Durrani is the chief of Islamabad police. He says it is not clear

what happened to the attackers. Mr. Durrani says police are working on

whether they are among the injured or dead.

/// DURRANI ACT ///

It is certainly a terrorist act and only to embarrass our country and

relations with other countries.

/// END ACT //

Two U-S citizens are among those killed in the attack. The Pakistani Health Minister told reporters they are a woman and her daughter. The minister says the husband is being treated for leg injuries.

One injured person describes the incident.

/// WITNESS ACT ///

A man in the middle of the sermon, he ran in and threw two or three

grenades and everyone was just caught by surprise of course. Nobody

understood what is he doing. What is he shouting at? But it was so fast.

/// END ACT ///

A U-S citizen, Cindy Irwin, who works for an independent missionary

group (the Evangelical Alliance Mission), says she heard the blast while

she was at the nearby U-S embassy. Ms. Irwin says she raced to the church

because some of her colleagues were inside.

/// IRWIN ACT ///

We heard this explosion and then we heard that there were some injuries and

possible deaths. I guess it should not be a surprise because this is full

of American people and for everything that is happening in Afghanistan for

revenge. We have heard of threats and perhaps this is one of those.

/// END ACT ///

Police have made no arrests, and no group has claimed responsibility

for the attack. Security forces have cordoned off the area around the

church, but blood stains, broken glass, and splintered wood could be seen on

the front steps.

It is not immediately clear why the church was targeted. Pakistan has

suffered a surge in religious violence in recent weeks between militants

from majority Sunni and minority Shiite sects of Islam.

But attacks on Christians are relatively rare in the country. In October last year,

unknown gunmen entered a church in a central Pakistani town

(Bahawalpur) and killed 16 worshipers. (SIGNED)

NEB/AG/RH/RAE



NEWSLETTER
Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list