Another attack: Three killed in attack on Express News van in Karachi

Published: January 17, 2014

The digital satellite news gathering (DSNG) of Express News in which three men were killed in the attack. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS

The digital satellite news gathering (DSNG) of Express News in which three men were killed in the attack. PHOTO: MOHAMMAD NOMAN/EXPRESS The digital satellite news gathering (DSNG) of Express News in which three men were killed in the attack. PHOTO: EXPRESS Unidentified armed men fired upon Express News van near Matric Board Office in Karachi.

KARACHI.: Three people associated with Express News were killed when a van belonging to the channel came under attack near the Matric board office in Nazimabad area of Karachi on Friday evening, Express News reported.

According to the Express News bureau chief Aslam Khan, the van had been parked near the Matric Board Office as part of routine field deployment when it came under attack.

The attack left technician Waqas , driver Khalid, and guard Ashraf injured. They were rushed to the hospital where they succumbed to their wounds.

DIG West Javed Odho said there were four attackers on two motorbikes who leaned into the vehicle and fired seventeen bullets using 9mm pistols and suppressors.

This is the third attack on Express News following firing by unknown men at the offices in August 2013, and an attack with crackers in December 2013. The attacks had left at least four people injured.

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00:07 am

Express News correspondent Nadeem Khan reports that investigation agencies CIA and CID teams scoured the attack site and collected evidence.

The CCTV cameras installed near the site were not operational.

The location where the attack took place.

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11:50 pm

DIG West Javed Odho said that the van was parked on the double road heading towards Orangi.

He added that four assailants came on two motorbikes. They came from the Orangi bridge side. One of the attackers was wearing a sweater. The attackers leaned into the vehicle and fired.

Odho explained that there was no police or Rangers picket near the location where the van was parked. He added that the police were trying to pursue the suspects.

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11:30 pm

Sindh chief minister Qaim Ali Shah says journalists are an important part of society and it is the duty of the government to protect the journalist community.

“It is our job to protect you. We have made some progress in this. Federal and provincial government has had some success and the situation has improved by 30-40%. You can see situation in other parts of the country,”

“We need latest equipment and training to better control this situation.”

Shah promised that an FIR will be filed against whoever is nominated.

Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan’s Ehsanullah Ehsan on Express News accepted responsibility for Friday’s attack.

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11:20 pm

Waqas (TECHNICIAN)

Khalid (DRIVER)

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10:59 pm

Express News correspondent Nadeem Khan reports from the crime scene that 17 bullets were fired from 9mm pistols. He adds that according to SSP Central Amir Farooq that four casings were found outside on the ground, while 13 were found inside the van.

Khan added that the van’s rear hatch was open and the assailants leaned in and fired on the men from that end of the van.

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10:52 pm

Sharjeel Memon says that police are following up clues of previous two attacks on Express News.

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10:48 pm

SSP Central Amir Farooq says that along with the 32-bore, a 9mm pistol was also used in the attack. One of the weapons used in the attack, was fired with a suppressor.

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10:40 pm

Senator Rehman Malik says we now have to decide whether we want to continue negotiations with Taliban or we want to tackle them militarily like we did in Swat and Malakand.

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10:36 pm

Express News anchor Shahzeb Khanzada who had recorded a programme with the slain crew, recalls their commitment and dedication with which they conducted their work.

Khanzada recalled that while anchors come on TV and get exposure, the technical staff are exposed to the threats as much as the main anchors.

He flayed the Sindh chief minister for not coming and condoling with the channel, but having time for meeting with the MQM. “CM can hold press conference at two in the morning with the governor but he does not have the time to come and condole with us.”

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10:33 pm

Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) leader and leader of the Opposition in the National Assembly Khursheed Shah said that this attack could have been avoided if culprits of the previous attacks had been brought to justice.

Shah said that government should come forward and take action on this incident.

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10:30 pm

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chairman Imran Khan condemned the attack on the Express News van. He added that the Sindh government has failed.

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10:25 pm

ANP Sindh chief Senator Shahi Syed has said that the attack on Express News shows the need for an army operation in Karachi since the police and Rangers have been unable to handle the situation.

Sindh government has announced Rs2 million reward for information that leads to identification, arrest of attackers.

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10:18 pm

Express News reports that officials have recovered 17 casings of 32-bore from the scene of the crime.

The driver received one gun shot wound to his chest. The guard received four bullet injuries, three in the chest and one in the shoulder. The technician was shot twice in the stomach and once in the head.

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10:13 pm

Awami National Party (ANP) leader Zahid Khan, while condemning the attack on Express News, said that it seems like a particular group was targeting the channel for its honest reporting.

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10:10 pm

Director News Express News Fahd Hussain says this is the third time the attack has happened on Express News and now three of our colleagues have been killed. Clearly someone is trying to send us a message.

First of all, our entire team and the group, we condole with the families of our colleagues.

This is a big tragedy for us. But, despite the attacks, our resolve will not be broken.

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10:05 pm

Muttahida Qaumi Movement leader Waseem Akhtar condemned the attack on Express News and said that no one is safe in Karachi.

The MQM leader said that it seems like the government is not serious in carrying out the targeted operation in Karachi whole heartedly. He added that they were tired of condemning such incidents, and that the government should take concrete steps to stops attacks on journalists.

Akhtar added that he requests the federal and provincial government to take notice of the attack on the Express Media Group and arrest the culprits behind this attack.

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10:02 pm

Karachi Union of Journalists president GM Jamali has declared 10 days of mourning over the murder of personnel deputed in Express News van.

A meeting of journalists is also expected in the Press Club soon to deliberate a course of action in the wake of Friday’s attack.

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9:55 pm

Awami Muslim League chief MNA Shiekh Rasheed Ahmed says that the attack has set a dangerous precedent.

He added that things are turning for the worse in the country. Says he is at a loss why Express News is being attacked.

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9:50pm

Express News correspondent Nadeem Khan reports that Police and Rangers were deputed near the Express News van, yet the attackers managed fire at the van and escape.

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9:45 pm

Sindh Minister for Information Sharjeel Inam Memon offers condolences over the deaths of three Express News personnel.

Memon calls IG Police, seeks report of the incident.

Memon while commenting on the investigations into the two previous attacks, conceded that those cases had yet to be solved.

Memon added that targeted operation is continuing in the city, and that he was hopeful that the attackers will be arrested.

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9:20 pm

Express News bureau chief Aslam Khan, the van had been parked near the Matric Board Office as part of routine field deployment when it came under attack.

The attack left technician Waqas , driver Khalid, and guard Ashraf injured. They were rushed to the hospital where the technician, the driver and the guard succumbed to their wounds.

This is the third attack on the Express Media Group, in the space of five months. In the first attack on the Karachi office on August 16, 2013, a woman and a guard were injured after unknown assailants opened fire. In the second attack on December 2, 2013 at least four armed assailants riding motorbikes threw two home-made bombs and resorted to indiscriminate firing at the Express Media Group building, injuring a guard in the incident.

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