Pakistan killed six Christians children


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(Copy from CTV news)
Date: 10/14/02
Time: 9:46:55 PM
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(Pakistan killed six Christians children) (Copy from CTV news)

Comments Updated Mon. Aug. 5 2002 5:28 PM ET Armed militants kill six at Pakistani school

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CTV News StaffMasked gunmen burst into a school for the children of foreign missionaries near the Pakistani town of Murree Monday, killing six.At least three masked men armed with AK-47 assault rifles started shooting just after students returned to class from their morning break.The assailants exchanged fire with guards at Murree Christian School for nearly 15 minutes before escaping unharmed.

The attackers ignored the elementary and secondary school buildings where children aged six to 18 were in class.Police say it is too early to say who was behind the attack.Dozens of heavily armed soldiers were stationed outside the school compound near Murree, which was developed as a resort by the colonial British.Two Pakistani security guards, a cook, a carpenter and a receptionist were among the dead, the school's director, Russell Morton, told Reuters.None of the school's foreign staff were harmed.

The 146 children of missionaries from countries including the U.S., Canada and Britain were also not hurt in the attack.Monday's attack was the third deadly assault against Pakistan's Christian minority since the U.S.-led war on terror began last year.

In March, a grenade attack at a Protestant church in Islamabad killed five people including the wife and daughter of an American diplomat. "They wanted to hit at the missionary community. What better way than to hit at their kids?" Morton said.The mayor of Murree, a town about 50 km from Islamabad, told Reuters that two of the dead were Christian, the other four Muslim.Consulate closedThe U.S. consulate in Karachi, which was the target of a bomb attack in June that killed 12 people, was closed Monday because of a security alert, consulate staff said.A spokeswoman at the U.S.

embassy in Islamabad declined to provide details of the security alert, but said the U.S. Embassy in Islamabad was still open. A State Department official said he was unaware of a specific threat behind the closure of the Karachi consulate and said the consulate from time to time conducted reviews of its security operations.Karachi police said they had no information as to the nature of the security threat.