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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Bhutto Assassinated: Victim of Suicide Attack

Scene at the Rawalpindi park
The blast happened by an entrance to Liaquat Bagh. photo courtesy BBC

Benazir Bhutto succumbed to a suicide attack and was pronounced dead at Rawalpindi General Hospital. She had just finished a political rally at Liaquat Bagh and was heading out from there. Liaquat Bagh was named after Pakistan’s first Prime Minister, Liaquat Ali Khan who was assassinated here in 1952.

According to Absar Alam of GeoTV, Benazir finished her address at the Liaquat Bagh, and took a seat in her bullet-proof land cruiser. Beside her in the car were her former secretary Naheed Khan and journalist and spokesperson for PPP Sherry Rahman, and in the front Makhdoom Amin Fahim.

She got up and was waiving to the crowd through the sun roof when the suicide bomber fired and attacked. She fell back in the cruiser and was rushed to the nearby Pindi General Hospital where doctors tried to revive her for 35 minutes before declaring her dead at 6:16 pm local time.

She returned to Pakistan on October 18, 2007 after 8 years of self-exile ignoring government intelligence warnings that her life could be in danger. She also underplayed intelligence from her own sources. Her convoy was attacked and over 140 civilians were killed and over 400 injured in targeted suicide attacks then.

Thirty other people have also been reported dead in the bomb blast at Liaquat Bagh

Benazir was the first born of Zulfikar Ali and Nusrat Bhutto. Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was hanged on April 04, 1979 on orders from former President Zia ul Haq.

His second wife Nusrat Bhutto, now 78, suffers from Alzheimer and lives in Dubai. They had four children, Benazir (June 21, 1953 – Dec 27,2007), Murteza Sep 18,1954 – Sep 20, 1996), Sanam (b 1957) and Shahnawaz (1958 - 1985)

Shahnawaz died under mysterious conditions – drug over dose according to some – poisoned by ex suggest others. Murteza was killed outside family house at 70 Clifton when Benazir was the Prime Minister. Her Uncle Mumtaz Bhutto and Ghanwa, Murteza’s wife and Fatima his daughter openly accused Benazir and Zardari for orchestrating that assassination.

The last surviving child Sanam is a housewife and not in politics.



from blogger Henna P of Karachi Metroblog

There's a three day mourning announced by Mr. President.

Yes, I am already mourning for all the other people who have been mislead, in their passion for violence, for revenge. Every time, Karachi pays for the loss. As I speak National Hospital, right after Kala Pull has been set ablaze. Really, a hospital? A man has been shot, a bus has been torched near the Steel Mill. Shops are closed, people are panicking. A lot of people returning from offices have abandoned their cars in fear of being set on fire themselves. Gulistan-e-Jauher is the centre of violent activities.

Yes, no one should die in such dire circumstances. Terrorism is what it was. But the aftermath of terrorism must be terrorism as well?

From Momekh of Lahore Metroblog

Effectively, everything is closed for now. We have a Shell Select store next to our house and that was the last store/shop within the Cantt area to finally close down. The Select Store (normally open 24 hours) was flooded with people from all across the area probably. The shops are closing mainly because of fear of retaliation, which is already taking hold in many areas of Lahore. The situation may get worse outside with people burning anything they come up with. Most of the shopping areas (Fortress + MM ALAM confirmed) are closing down fast due to fear of violent protests.

Habib Bank at Bank Square Market in Model Town is the latest victim of mob mentality and violent reaction to Benazir's murder.

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