Tuesday, December 16, 2008

‘Peshawar blast conspiracy to spark sectarian violence’

Daily Times

Sunday, December 07, 2008

By Daud Khattak

PESHAWAR: Perpetrators of the Friday’s terrorist act in Peshawar failed to achieve their aim to ignite sectarian violence in the city, officials told Daily Times on Saturday.
“The target was well-chosen and the attack was part of the series of blasts carried out in Hashtnagri (Peshawar), Orakzai Agency and Dera Ismail Khan over the previous few days,” said the official who did not want to be named.
The time selected for the bomb blast revealed that it was not a simple terrorist strike, said the official, who believed the perpetrators chose evening hours when most of shops in the congested area are closed. He said common citizens were not the target of the terrorist bid.
“Had the explosion taken place in the morning or afternoon, which is the peak timings in that area, the death tally would have been a hundred or more,” said the official while pointing at the gravity of the blast.
The Jehangira Ward, the area where the explosion took place, consists of Koochi Bazaar, Kohati and Koocha Risaldar. There are 11 small and large imam bargahs in that area, and the Alamdar-e-Karbala Imam Bargah, outside which the explosion took place, is one of those.
The target was well-chosen as the area is mostly populated by people belonging to Shia sect and a brisk reaction against people of the opposite Sunni sect was expected, said the official.
He said mostly Shia people from Parachinar area of Kurram Agency, which has witnessed the worst-ever sectarian violence in the previous months, were living in that area.


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