Suicide Bomber Kills 35 People Near Pakistan's Army Headquarters
By Sean Maroney
02 November 2009
Police in Pakistan say a suicide bomber killed at least 35 people Monday near the country's army headquarters in Rawalpindi, where gunmen kept up a nearly 24-hour hostage-taking assault last month.
Monday's blast occurred in a parking lot outside a government bank, just a few kilometers from the capital, Islamabad.
On the first business day of the month, many people - especially government employees - line up at the bank to collect their monthly salaries or pensions.
Mohammad Saleem says he was going to the bank to get his salary when a blast occurred near the gate. He said he ran out from the building and saw many dead bodies.
Saleem said his child - who was sitting in his car parked in the bank's lot - is still missing.
Last month, the number of attacks across the country increased, starting with a suicide bombing in a United Nations office in Islamabad and ending with a massive bombing in a Peshawar market that was the single deadliest act of terrorism since 2007.
Also, militants launched an assault on the army headquarters in Rawalpindi, which killed the nine attackers, more than a dozen soldiers and several civilians.
The Pakistani government has offered up to $5 million for the capture, or any information leading to the capture, of Pakistani Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud and more than a dozen other Taliban leaders.
The military has pushed deep inside the South Waziristan tribal region, bordering Afghanistan. The area is a stronghold for Mehsud's fighters, and army officials have pledged to completely wipe out the militants in the region.
|Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list|