Daily brief: Karachi police attacked

Karachi under fire Yesterday evening, the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed credit for a coordinated gun, grenade, and truck bomb attack on the headquarters of Karachi’s counterterrorism police, which earlier this week had arrested six members of the Sunni sectarian militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, which is believed to have links to the TTP and al-Qaeda, and a TTP ...

ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images
ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images
ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images

Karachi under fire

Yesterday evening, the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed credit for a coordinated gun, grenade, and truck bomb attack on the headquarters of Karachi's counterterrorism police, which earlier this week had arrested six members of the Sunni sectarian militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, which is believed to have links to the TTP and al-Qaeda, and a TTP militant from Bajaur (AJE, Independent, Guardian, WSJ, NYT, Tel, FT, Geo, Geo). The blast, which police officials say used 1,100 pounds of explosives, left as many as 20 dead and more than 180 injured, and created a crater some 40 feet across and 10 to 15 feet deep (Dawn, ET, Daily Times, McClatchy, LAT, PTI, AFP, AP, CNN, Reuters).

Pakistan's Dawn notes that the area where the blast occurred, within walking distance of the provincial chief minister's house, two five-star hotels, and the U.S. consulate, is "supposed to be a most secure area of the city" (Dawn, Tel, CNN). TTP spokesman Azam Tariq said the attack was in retaliation for, variously, drone strikes in northwest Pakistan, the arrests and alleged torture of TTP fighters by intelligence agencies, and anti-militant military operations. However, Pakistan's interior minister Rehman Malik said LeJ was responsible (Dawn, AFP). Bonus read: Karachi's downward spiral (FP). Dawn.com is running a bleak slideshow of the morning after (Dawn).

Karachi under fire

Yesterday evening, the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan claimed credit for a coordinated gun, grenade, and truck bomb attack on the headquarters of Karachi’s counterterrorism police, which earlier this week had arrested six members of the Sunni sectarian militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, which is believed to have links to the TTP and al-Qaeda, and a TTP militant from Bajaur (AJE, Independent, Guardian, WSJ, NYT, Tel, FT, Geo, Geo). The blast, which police officials say used 1,100 pounds of explosives, left as many as 20 dead and more than 180 injured, and created a crater some 40 feet across and 10 to 15 feet deep (Dawn, ET, Daily Times, McClatchy, LAT, PTI, AFP, AP, CNN, Reuters).

Pakistan’s Dawn notes that the area where the blast occurred, within walking distance of the provincial chief minister’s house, two five-star hotels, and the U.S. consulate, is "supposed to be a most secure area of the city" (Dawn, Tel, CNN). TTP spokesman Azam Tariq said the attack was in retaliation for, variously, drone strikes in northwest Pakistan, the arrests and alleged torture of TTP fighters by intelligence agencies, and anti-militant military operations. However, Pakistan’s interior minister Rehman Malik said LeJ was responsible (Dawn, AFP). Bonus read: Karachi’s downward spiral (FP). Dawn.com is running a bleak slideshow of the morning after (Dawn).

Yesterday, the Pakistani government launched a new anti-corruption campaign, and the heads of government departments whose employees are found guilty of graft will reportedly be held responsible (Reuters, ET, APP). Pakistan and international donors are in disagreement over aid to Pakistani flood victims, with donors seeking assurance that the aid will not be used corruptly and that Pakistan will seek funds via taxes, and Pakistan "chaf[ing] at efforts to tie aid to certain actions, including setting up government transparency mechanisms" (WSJ).

Attack in the capital

A suicide car bomber detonated explosives as a NATO convoy passed his vehicle on the outskirts of Kabul, wounding one Afghan soldier and one ISAF soldier in the first attack in Kabul since security was increased three months ago (Reuters, AP, Pajhwok). Heavy fighting between coalition forces and militants occurred yesterday in Helmand’s Sangin district, after a joint Afghan-NATO patrol was hit by a roadside bomb and militants continued to attack as casualties were evacuated by helicopter (AP, Pajhwok).

Equal opportunity cricket

Afghanistan’s Cricket Board has announced the country will get its first national women’s cricket team, which will compete in an international Twenty20 tournament in Kuwait early next year (ET). The uniforms will include a hijab modeled on the one worn by the UAE’s women’s team.

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