Two Dead in Police Station Bombing

ISLAMABAD (AP) - A bomber blew himself up at a police station
housing terrorism intelligence offices, killing himself and one
officer in the Pakistani capital.

The blast occurred late Monday on Pakistan's national day.

Islamist militants are blamed for near-daily attacks in the
Western-allied but increasingly unstable country, though little
information on Monday's bomber was immediately available.

Islamabad is one of the safer cities in Pakistan, but it has not
escaped violence, including last September's deadly suicide truck
bombing at the Marriott Hotel which killed more than 50 people.

The man detonated explosives at the gate of the police station
in the center of the capital, Interior Ministry secretary Kamal
Shah said. He said an officer who was apparently challenging the
bomber died in the blast.

The police station houses the offices of the Special Branch,
which is responsible for intelligence gathering about terrorism,
sectarianism and political activities in Pakistan.

"We were on high alert, but there is no way to detect a person
who is determined to blow himself up," Interior Ministry chief
Rehman Malik said.

Pakistan is under intense Western pressure to crack down on the
militants, many of which are believed linked to al-Qaida. They are
also blamed for attacks on U.S. troops in neighboring Pakistan. The
terrorists are believed to have established safe havens in tribal
regions close to the Afghan border.


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