At least 108 people have been killed including police and 100 wounded after two bombs hit crowds greeting returning Pakistani ex-PM Benazir Bhutto.
Ms Bhutto was being driven in a convoy through crowded streets from Karachi airport to a rally to mark her homecoming after eight years in exile.
Ms Bhutto was not among the casualties and has been driven to safety. [complete article]
An all-out battle for control of Pakistan’s restive North and South Waziristan is about to commence between the Pakistani military and the Taliban and al-Qaeda adherents who have made these tribal areas their own.
According to a top Pakistani security official who spoke to Asia Times Online on condition of anonymity, the goal this time is to pacify the Waziristans once and for all. All previous military operations – usually spurred by intelligence provided by the Western coalition – have had limited objectives, aimed at specific bases or sanctuaries or blocking the cross-border movement of guerrillas. Now the military is going for broke to break the back of the Taliban and a-Qaeda in Pakistan and reclaim the entire area.
The fighting that erupted two weeks ago, and that has continued with bombing raids against guerrilla bases in North Waziristan – turning thousands of families into refugees and killing more people than any India-Pakistan war in the past 60 years – is but a precursor of the bloodiest battle that is coming. [complete article]