9 killed, 30 injured as militants attack airport in Pakistan
Posted on: 16 Dec 2012
Suicide bombers armed with rockets attacked the military side of a Pakistani airport in the northwestern city of Peshawar on Saturday, killing four civilians and wounding more than 30, officials said. Five militants were also killed. The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Peshawar is on the edge of Pakistan's tribal region, the main sanctuary for al-Qaida and Taliban militants in the country. The city has frequently been attacked in the past few years, but Saturday was the first strike against the airport — which is jointly used by the air force and civilian authorities.
The militants fired three rockets at the airport, two of which hit a wall around the premises, said Mian Iftikhar Hussain, the information minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.
The third rocket landed near a government building outside the wall, Hussain said.
The militants also set off a car bomb outside the wall around the airport, causing civilian casualties, said the military.
The dead and wounded civilians from the attack came from neighbourhoods located near the airport, said Umar Ayub, a local hospital official. The 36 wounded persons included six women and three children, and several people were reportedly in a critical condition, said Ayub. The five militants were killed in a gunbattle with security forces during the attack, said the military.
The airport was closed, and flights were diverted to other cities, said Pervez George, a spokesman for the Civil Aviation Authority.Reuters