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World Condemns Boston Marathon Attack

  • VOA News

A woman is comforted by a man near a triage tent set up for the Boston Marathon after explosions went off at the 117th Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts April 15, 2013.

A woman is comforted by a man near a triage tent set up for the Boston Marathon after explosions went off at the 117th Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts April 15, 2013.

Leaders from around the world, especially countries wracked by violence targeting civilians, are condemning the twin bombings at the Boston Marathon, which killed three people and wounded more than 100 others.

Pakistan's Foreign Office condemned what it called the "terrorist attacks," saying the government and Pakistani people are "deeply shocked and saddened" by the "despicable act."

Pakistan has been battling a Taliban insurgency since 2007, and as a result has seen many bombings in public places, attacks that have claimed thousands of civilians' lives. he Pakistani Taliban, which has in the past claimed responsibility for attempted attacks in the United States, denied having any role in the Boston bombings.

In neighboring Afghanistan where the Taliban is blamed for most of the Afghan war civilian casualties, President Hamid Karzai strongly denounced the Boston attack and offered condolences and sympathies to the families of the victims.

The Boston Marathon

  • 2013 more than 23,000 runners
  • Last year, runners from 92 countries took part
  • Race passes through eight cities and towns
  • Held on Patriots' Day, a state holiday in Massachusetts
  • Only U.S. marathon that maintains qualifying times
  • World's oldest still-running annual marathon, first held in 1897
In India, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh responded by expressing his "solidarity with the American people in the struggle against terrorism." In 2008, India's commercial capital Mumbai was under siege for days as heavily armed militants launched coordinated gun and bombing attacks across the city.

Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud also spoke out against the attack on the innocent athletes and their supporters, calling the bombing "the most depraved and vicious act of cowardice." At the same time, his country's Islamist militant group al-Shabab mocked online those injured and killed.

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon lamented the "senseless violence," saying the incident was even more appalling because it took place at an event known "for bringing people together from around the world in a spirit of sportsmanship and harmony."

Deadly bombings in the United States

  • April 15, 2013: Twin blasts at the Boston Marathon kill at least 3, injure more than 140
  • September 11, 2001: Hijacked jets crash into World Trade Center, Pentagon and a Pennsylvania field killing nearly 3,000
  • July 27, 1996: Atlanta Summer Olympics bombing kills 2, injures more than 100
  • April 19, 1995: Car bomb at Oklahoma City federal building kills 168, injures more than 500
  • February 26, 1993: Van explosion in World Trade Center garage kills 6, injures more than 1,000
  • December 29, 1975: Bomb at New York's LaGuardia Airport kills 11, injures 75
  • September 16, 1920: Bombing in New York's Wall Street area kills 40, injures hundreds
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation strongly condemned what it called the "cowardly attacks." In a statement, the OIC said it has fought against terrorism in all its forms, and offered its condolences, prayers and support to the people of Boston.

Meanwhile from the Vatican, Pope Francis "deeply grieved" the news of the attacks and prayed that all Bostonians "will be united in a resolve not to be overcome by evil, but to combat evil with good."

European Union President Herman Van Rompuy condemned what he called the "appalling attacks" and expressed confidence that the perpetrators will be brought to justice.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen also expressed "deep shock" at the attack and offered condolences to those affected. In a statement, he said his thoughts are with the people of Boston and all of the United States.

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