Pakistan airport cleared of militants after attack kills 24
June 09, 2014 00:00
KARACHI - Pakistan's military on Monday declared an end to an all-night offensive to quell a Taliban siege of Karachi airport that left 24 people dead, including 10 militants, and threatens to destroy a nascent peace process.
"The attack is over and we have cleared the area of all militants and we will hand over the airport to the Civil Aviation Authority at 12:00 pm (0700 GMT)," a spokesman for the paramilitary Rangers, Sibtain Rizvi, told reporters after nearly 12 hours of fighting.
The attack at Jinnah International Airport in Pakistan's biggest city began just before midnight Sunday and raged until dawn, when the military said that all 10 attackers had been killed after they had stormed two areas equipped with suicide vests, grenades and rocket launchers.
But after authorities initially declared the area cleared, an AFP reporter witnessed fresh gunfire break out inside the airport -- where explosions and fires had erupted during the night -- prompting security forces to relaunch the operation.