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Rockets fired at US, UN offices in Pakistan

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    Rockets fired at US, UN offices in Pakistan

    Six rockets were launched in a coordinated attack on U.S. and United Nations' offices in Pakistan's capital Islamabad on Friday, police said.

    Police said only one injury was reported -- a Pakistani guard near the American Centre was slightly injured by shrapnel -- and no one had claimed responsibility.

    The late morning attack came two days before U.N. sanctions backed by the United States were to go into effect against Afghanistan's ruling Taleban movement for not surrendering terrorism suspect Osama bin Laden.

    The United States condemned the attacks and said it was still unclear who carried them out.

    "We condemn these attacks. We are trying to find out more facts on injuries and at this point it is not clear who is responsible," National Security Council spokesman Mike Hammer said in Washington.

    The supreme leader of the Taleban, Mullah Mohammad Omar, also condemned the attacks, which Pakistan's foreign office called "premeditated and wanton terrorism."

    "There can be no doubt that these terrorist acts have been perpetrated by elements hostile to the interests of Pakistan and Afghanistan in addition to creating a sense of instability and insecurity," said the foreign office statement.


    The attack also came exactly one month after prime minister Nawaz Sharif's government was ousted in a bloodless military coup, but there was no apparent connection as the overthrow by army chief General Pervez Musharraf was greeted with widespread support in Pakistan.

    Sharif is in detention and has been accused of hijacking and kidnapping, which carry a death penalty.

    "There were two (incidents) in the vicinity of U.S. buildings but there were no Americans injured," said Mark Wentworth, a spokesman for the American Centre, formerly known as the United States Information Service (USIS) centre.

    A senior Islamabad district officer told Reuters that six rockets were believed to have been fired from vehicles in three different locations within a few minutes of each other at about 11:15 a.m. (0615 GMT), but police said only four of the rockets could be accounted for.


    "We have no suspects so far. It appears the rockets were aimed at the U.S. and U.N. offices, but they were off target," said the officer, who asked not to be identified.

    The vehicles used in the attack were believed to have been equipped with twin-barrel rocket launchers.

    All caught fire after the rockets were launched, leading to some initial confusion about the number and nature of the blasts. Police originally thought some may have been car bombs.

    One rocket hit a steel fence at the American Centre with flying debris injuring the local guard. A vehicle was found burning just 90 metres (yards) away from the building.

    A second rocket hit a World Food Programme car but did not explode, while a third hit a nearby Pakistani government office, police said.

    A fourth exploded when it hit the Margalla hills on the edge of Islamabad.

    "We are collecting information but there seems to be no major human casualties," a senior police officer told Reuters.

    One of the vehicles exploded near the Saudi-Pak Tower, which houses many U.N. agencies.

    Another car, which had a U.N. license plate, caught fire near the U.S. embassy in the heavily guarded diplomatic compound, which houses most of the embassies in Islamabad.

    It was not known if the rockets in the vehicle were targeted at the U.S. embassy, which was not hit in the attack.


    The U.S.-initiated sanctions ordered by the U.N. Security Council are to go into effect against the Taleban on Sunday unless it hands over Saudi-born bin Laden, wanted in the United States on charges of masterminding bomb attacks on two U.S. embassies in Africa in 1998 that killed more than 200 people.

    The imminent sanctions have already caused protests in Afghanistan, where the U.N. office in Kandahar was stoned during a demonstration by 50,000 people on Wednesday.


    Where were the dreaded intelligence agencies when this happened? What happened to security? How can cars roam the capital with rocket launchers in them and nobody notices them? Some questions to be answered by the authorities. First test for the military regime.

    Pakistan is headin the Taliban way. Anarchy is soon to follow.


      Reagan this is mild when compared by your normal anti Pakistan triades, you must be slipping. Are you feeling alright?

      [This message has been edited by ehsan (edited November 13, 1999).]


        Every action has a reaction[Newton's 3rd law]. Amercicans should not be that stupid to realize that what they do will go unnoticed or reacted.

        Fata Morgana


          really surprising. rockets blasting in daylight in the terrorism capital of the earth.
          some one rightly said, one who plays with fire ends with fire.




            Till next time***K_I_S_S***



              Whats slipping is 'Pakistan Islamic Republic'


              [This message has been edited by sabah (edited November 17, 1999).]


                Mr Cowboy,

                Even if our banana republic is slipping we are here to make sure it never goes down. You can bet on that. pakistan has been written off so many times but it is still standing. True Pakis have always taken the knocks in their strides and I can guarantee you that we will still be here in ten years time and so will our country.

                Only RATS desert a sinking ship (I'm assuming you're a Paki by the way). Rats with big cowboy hats on. You know where you can stick your anti-Pakistan websites.

                [This message has been edited by sabah (edited November 17, 1999).]



                  What exactly are you guys trying to do to prevent Pakistan from going down like the Egypt Air flight ?? One guy pulls it up, another guy pulls it down...muahaha.


                    mr. extreme,
                    i remember a pakistani play in which the old man tells his son that be ready the enemy is on the border ready for attack. the son replys that the enemy has taken off his soldiers from the border because there is no need to attack or defend. the commnunity which is fighting within itself does not require any outside force to kill. they will kill themselves. i think it was said by moin akhtar. at that time i had enjoyed the joke but now i feel he was telling a fact.