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Taliban target Karachi top cop

At least eight people were killed, including six policemen, after a Taliban suicide bomber drove an explosives-laden car into the home of a senior police official in Pakistan’s commercial hub Karachi on Monday.

world Updated: Sep 19, 2011 23:54 IST

At least eight people were killed, including six policemen, after a Taliban suicide bomber drove an explosives-laden car into the home of a senior police official in Pakistan’s commercial hub Karachi on Monday.

The six policemen were guarding the home of Karachi’s senior superintendent of police Chaudhry Mohammad Aslam, who survived the attack, said police official Naeem Shaikh, adding that a woman and her son were also killed in the blast in which police said 300 kgs of explosives were used.

Aslam told reporters that he has received threats from militant groups, including Pakistani Taliban insurgents, who are close to al Qaeda.

“I was sleeping when they carried out this cowardly act and rammed a vehicle packed with explosives into my house,” said Aslam. “I will not be cowed. I will teach a lesson to generations of militants.”

Pakistan’s Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing, saying Aslam had arrested and killed many of its fighters.

“We will attack other police officials as well who are taking action against our people,” Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan told Reuters by telephone from an undisclosed location.

He went on to name five Karachi police officials on the Taliban hit list.

The assault broke a lull in militant violence in Karachi, Pakistan’s biggest city that is home to ports, the main stock exchange and central bank.

The blast left an eight-foot crater and much of Aslam’s house was destroyed. Cement blocks, car parts, broken chairs and pieces of shattered beds were strewn at the scene.

Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani said “elements playing with the lives of innocent people would not escape the law of the land,” in a statement.

Aslam is a well-known police officer who led many high-profile raids on suspected Qaeda cells.

Peshawar blast kills 3

A bomb killed at least three people and wounded 21 others at a market in Peshawar late Monday evening, police said.

“At least three people were killed and 21 others wounded in a bomb blast,” police official Mohammad Faisal said.