News

Pakistan Hunts for Sri Lankan Cricket Team Attackers

Multimedia

Audio

Pakistani police say they have detained several people suspected of possible links to Tuesday's attack against Sri Lanka's cricket team, but so far have announced no arrests in the manhunt.

Pakistani security officials have been eager to demonstrate they are pursuing the estimated 12 gunmen who attacked Sri Lanka's cricket team during morning rush hour in downtown Lahore.

The attackers were filmed by at least two Pakistani news crews during a 20-minute gun battle with police, yet none of them were killed or captured.

Officials have struggled to explain security procedures for the high-profile match that led to the deaths of six police officers and a driver, as well as injuries to several players.  In London, a British match referee who was in the convoy said security was lax and when the attack began, police fled.

During a joint news conference with Sri Lanka's foreign minister, Pakistan's foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said investigators are making progress.

"I've shared some of our initial reports, I've also shared with him that today, we have some details and important leads that will eventually unearth the people responsible for this terrible act," he said.

Qureshi said officials will release details to the public later.

The Punjab government published photographs of two of the attackers in newspapers, offering a more than $125,000 reward for information leading to their arrest.

The attack has also become part of a domestic political dispute between President Asif Zardari and his critics, who say his imposition of executive rule in Punjab last week led to disarray in the government and decreased security for the cricket match.

Officials allied with Mr. Zardari rejected allegations that top police officials in Lahore had been changed during the past few days.

For much of Pakistan, where cricket is considered a national pastime, there was a resignation that the country has become too dangerous to host international matches.

Sri Lanka was the first team to play a five-day test in Pakistan in more than a year - and only came after several other teams backed out.

Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Rohitha Bogollagama told reporters in Islamabad that Tuesday's incident is the first terrorist attack targeting Sri Lankans outside their home country.
 
"This is the danger in living with terrorists in the world. We have said that in a voice of our own to the world for several decades," he said. "Now the world has come to hear it better and they will hear it more with these types of incidents occurring."

The foreign minister says despite Tuesday's attack, he remains convinced in cricket's power to bring people together. He said sport diplomacy remains a character of civilized societies.

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs