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2009-06-09 India-Pakistan
Truck bomb and gunnies attack 5-star Peshawar hotel
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Posted by tipper 2009-06-09 13:22|| E-Mail|| Front Page|| [6598 views ]  Top

#1 The rear of the hotel has collapsed, with many more dead an buried.
From Al Jazeera
Taliban fighters had threatened to stage a series of attacks against civilian and government targets in retaliation for the military offensive in the province.

Iqbal Khattaq, bureau chief of the Daily Times, told Al Jazeera that Pakistani intelligence agencies and police had been "tipped off" about a possible attack by militants from the South Waziristan and the Swat region of the NWFP.

"This hotel was [thought to be] quite secure - a number of private security arrangements had been made, including using sniffer dogs," he said.

"This building is also quite far away from the main road, so it was [thought to be] hard for bombers to carry out an attack similar to a bombing at a Marriott hotel [in Islamabad] last year.

"American officials and diplomats were often seen at this hotel; we do not know whether any [US personnel] are among the dead and wounded."
Posted by tipper 2009-06-09 14:16||   2009-06-09 14:16|| Front Page Top

#2 per Asian wires:

Police official Liaqat Ali says gunmen stormed into the Pearl Continental Hotel in the northwestern city on Tuesday night just before "a big bomb went off."
Posted by Frozen Al 2009-06-09 14:36||   2009-06-09 14:36|| Front Page Top

#3 Update:
Death toll now 11 + 40 injured.
Rear of hotel collapsed. People may be buried in the rubble.
Posted by Frozen Al 2009-06-09 14:54||   2009-06-09 14:54|| Front Page Top

#4 So does this mean Blinky's gotta find a new "lair"?
Posted by tu3031 2009-06-09 16:08||   2009-06-09 16:08|| Front Page Top

#5 More details:

Suicide attackers detonated a truck bomb Tuesday outside a luxury hotel in Peshawar that U.S. officials were in negotiations to make into an American consulate, officials said. The attack killed at least five people and wounded dozens more.
Posted by Seafarious 2009-06-09 16:22||   2009-06-09 16:22|| Front Page Top

#6 Previous Rantburg story about consulate negotiations/plans:

A senior State Department official confirmed that the U.S. plan for the consulate in Peshawar involves the purchase of the luxury Pearl Continental hotel. The official spoke on the condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak publicly.

The Pearl Contintental is the city's only five-star hotel, set in its own expansive grounds, with a swimming pool. It's owned by Pakistani tycoon Sadruddin Hashwani.

The U.S. is embarking on a $1 billion crash program to expand its diplomatic presence in Pakistan and neighboring Afghanistan, another sign that the Obama administration is making a costly, long-term commitment to war-torn South Asia, U.S. officials said Wednesday.

The White House has asked Congress for -- and seems likely to receive -- $736 million to build a new U.S. embassy in Islamabad, along with permanent housing for U.S. government civilians and new office space in the Pakistani capital.

"If you're going to have people live in a car bomb-prone place, your are driven to not have a light footprint," said Ronald Neumann, a former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan and the president of the American Academy of Diplomacy. Neumann called the planned expansions "generally pretty justified."

Posted by Seafarious 2009-06-09 16:26||   2009-06-09 16:26|| Front Page Top

#7 From KUNA:

At least three militants were gunned down by security cordon officers before car-bomb exploded in a hotel in Peshawar on Tuesday, police sources told KUNA. They said more than 10 militants attacked the security forces on duty and used small and heavy arms. There were reports that the militants also fired two mortar shells at the hotel. Sources said that about five of the wounded foreigners were United Nations officials. The UN did not comment yet.
Posted by Seafarious 2009-06-09 16:36||   2009-06-09 16:36|| Front Page Top

Posted by Seafarious 2009-06-09 18:44||   2009-06-09 18:44|| Front Page Top

#9 Note to Pakistani army: Do try so hard to take prisoners for a few months.
Posted by Anonymoose 2009-06-09 19:54||   2009-06-09 19:54|| Front Page Top

#10 Was a 5 star hotel in Peshawar reality or a fantasy?
I'm wondering if such a place can really be 5 star in hellholes...

This is a perfect example.. Getting shot at and then blown up is not something you would give a 5 star rating for...
Posted by 3dc 2009-06-09 23:26||   2009-06-09 23:26|| Front Page Top

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