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Terror revists Lahore, 70 killed, 90 injured

29 May 2010 2 Comments

Taliban gun men on Friday May 28, targeted two mosques of minority Ahmadis in Lahore and killed seventy people. At least 90 people were injured. The last major attack on Pakistan’s cultural capital took place in March when a double suicide bombing killed dozens. This was for the first time Ahmadis were attacked. Hitherto, militants were targeting Shia Muslims.

Ahmadis consider themselves Muslim and follow all Islamic rituals. But they were declared non-Muslims in Pakistan in 1974 and in 1984 they were legally barred from proselytising or identifying themselves as Muslims.

“Punjabi chapter” of the Pakistan Taliban, formally known as the Tehrik-e-Taliban, has claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The attacks on minority communities were expected as banners of hatred against minorities were displayed in several parts of Lahore on Thursday. One of the anonymous banners in Ghari Shahu area read: “Jews Christians and Ahmedis are the enemies of Islam.”

Police said gunmen made the brazen attack shortly after Friday prayers at the Ahmadi mosques at Model Town and Ghari Shahu areas. Most of the worshippers were still inside the mosques as militants armed with AK-47 rifles, shotguns, grenades and other explosive devices entered through main gates, clearing their way with gunfire and hurling grenades.

The number of terrorists involved in the Ghari Shahu mosque is not known. while some were holed up inside the building  others took up positions on the  rooftop and minarets, and fired at security officials trying to enter the building. Six blasts were heard inside the mosque.

Four attackers were involved in the Model Town attack; two of them managed to climb over the wall of the mosque and threw grenades, while the other two opened fire from outside.

Police and elite forces took control of the two buildings after battling with the gunmen for nearly three hours, according to reports.

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