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Death toll rises in Peshawar luxury hotel suicide blast

Jeremy Page
London Telegraph [1]
Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The death toll from a suicide attack on a luxury hotel in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar has risen to 16 with at least 57 injured, including a British aid worker.

Officials said that two foreigners were among those killed when suspected Islamic militants stormed the Pearl Continental hotel, which is frequented by aid workers.

It was the latest in a series of attacks on Pakistani cities that officials say are revenge for a military offensive against the Taleban in the northwestern region of Swat.



The militants drove through the main gate of the Pearl Continental Hotel in a pick-up truck, spraying security guards with bullets before ramming their vehicle into the building and detonating it. “It was a suicide attack,” Sefwat Ghayur, the city police chief, said.

Five more bodies were recovered from the debris early this morning, he added, confirming that the total now stood at 16.

Abdul Ghafoor Afridi, a senor police official in Peshawar, warned that the death toll was expected to rise.

Full article here [1]