Down town…

Pakistani suicide bomb kills 15

Pakistani policemen inspect the wreckage at the bomb blast site in Quetta

At least 15 people have died in a suicide attack in the city of Quetta in south-western Pakistan, police say.

The explosion tore through a district courts complex as a court was in session, killing a judge, several lawyers and court officials.  No-one has claimed the attack, which injured dozens of people, police said.  Quetta is
the capital of Balochistan province, where for several years nationalist militants have been fighting for greater autonomy.

A severed head, thought to be the bomber’s, was found in the aftermath of the attack, police said.  “The bomber entered the courtroom, stood leaning against a wall and detonated,”  Balochistan police chief Tariq Khosa told AFP news agency.  Several of the injured are in a serious condition with severe burns.

Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz said the attack was against the Muslim faith and against humanity.  Pakistan’s security forces are already on high alert, following three suicide bomb attacks in the region in recent weeks, says the BBC’s Rumella Dasgupta.  Despite the government’s denials, there are regular reports of Taleban insurgents operating in the province, which borders Afghanistan, our correspondent says.  Pakistan is under pressure from its Western allies who want to see the country doing more to control the highly volatile situation along its western borders.


So this is where MD is….. beautiful downtown Quetta.  These news articles appear in the BBC website with alarming regularity, and every time I see  them, it makes me wonder how bad it does it have to get before they send MD back???  So I send out a ping with a ‘There was a bomb?  You still with us?  and in return, I get a message saying he was about 200m down the street when this incident occurred.

I immediately envisage that his 5 man protection detail must have gone into overdrive, machine guns at the ready, yabbering on mobile phones, and hustling him out into a waiting vehicle, Mission Impossible soundtrack playing … deftly and efficiently manhandling him to safety  in a manner that would do the secret service proud…right?  No!  Not so.  Should have been something like that … but no!  Smart he may be, but common sense occasionally deserts our intrepid MD… he’s 200m down the street from a bomb blast to be sure…   but he’s out carpet shopping… without aforementioned security detail!  Yep that’s right – he’s out carpet shopping for lovely handwoven silk and wool carpets having decided it was a good idea to give his babysitters the slip and go out ferreting for bargains amongst the locals for the day. 

Wonder if he’s going to come back from this posting in one piece at that rate!  🙂

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