Militants attack Pakistan's Jinnah International Airport, 23 dead

Jun 09 2014, 08:33 IST
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SummaryGunmen attacked one of Pakistan's biggest airports on Sunday and at least 23 people were killed, including all 10 of the attackers, media reported.

Gunmen attacked one of Pakistan's biggest airports on Sunday and at least 23 people were killed, including all 10 of the attackers, media reported.

The attack on Jinnah International Airport in Karachi, Pakistan's sprawling commercial hub of 18 million people, took place as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's government tries to engage Pakistani Taliban militants in negotiations to end years of fighting.

Gun battles went on for several hours and television pictures showed fire raging at the airport as ambulances ferried casualties away, but by dawn on Monday, the army said the airport had been secured.

"(The attackers) were confined to two areas and eliminated," the Dawn newspaper cited military spokesman Major-General Asim Bajwa as saying.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility, but Pakistani Taliban militants, allied with but separate from the Afghan Taliban, are battling to overthrow the Pakistani state and impose their hardline vision of Islamist rule.

Earlier, officials said all flights had been diverted.

Peace talks between the government and the Pakistani Taliban have failed in recent months, dampening hopes of reaching a negotiated settlement with the insurgency, which continues attacks against government and security targets.

Jinnah International Airport attack: 23 dead including 10 militants killed

(PTI) At least 23 persons, including 10 terrorists have been killed when heavily armed militants attacked the Jinnah International Airport's old terminal in Pakistan's financial capital Karachi.

The terrorists were corned and killed after they attacked the old airport terminal building late last night, posing as Airport Security Force (ASF) personnel.

"All 10 terrorists have been killed, the airport secured and they were unable to damage any aircraft or installations," a spokesman of the Inter Services Pubic Relations (ISPR) said.

He said that army units from the nearby Malir cantonment base, ASF commandos, paramilitary rangers and police had carried out the joint operation to clear the old airport area.

Sophisticated machine guns and rocket launchers were recovered from the terrorists who were being identified, the spokesman said.

For nearly six hours the Jinnah international airport which is close to the old airport terminal was shut down and all flights diverted as exchange of gunfire took place and heavy plumes of smoke and fire could be seen rising from inside the runaway area where the terrorists took cover in the hanger and engineering workshops.

During the ordeal several loud explosions were also heard but the spokesman confirmed that no aircraft was damaged nor any important assets or installations damaged during the operation.

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