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Taliban leader claims deadly Lahore raid

Video by Kate WILLIAMS

Latest update : 2009-03-31

Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud on Tuesday claimed responsibility for an attack on a police academy in Lahore, Pakistan, that killed eight cadets and wounded dozens more.

AFP - Pakistani Taliban chief Baitullah Mehsud, for whom the United States has posted a five-million-dollar reward, on Tuesday claimed responsibility for an attack on a police academy in Lahore.

"We claim responsibility for the attack. This was in retaliation to the ongoing drone attacks in the tribal areas. There will be more such attacks," Mehsud told AFP in a telephone conversation from an unknown location.

Attackers armed with guns, grenades and suicide vests Monday stormed the training centre near Pakistan's cultural capital Lahore, unleashing eight hours of gun battles until they were overpowered by security forces.

Seven police cadets, a civilian and four attackers died in what was the assault in Lahore in March, sparking fears that violence is seeping out of the tribal badlands on the Afghan border and into the heart of Pakistan.

Mehsud also claimed responsibility for a suicide attack outside a special branch police office in Islamabad, which killed one person on March 23, and a recent assault on a police post in Bannu in northwest Pakistan.



Date created : 2009-03-31