Pakistan Double Suicide Blast

Player utilities

This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.

Audio Transcript:

[Intro music]

Marco Werman: Hi, I'm Marco Werman. This is The World. Eleven days after the raid that killed Osama Bin Laden in Pakistan, the U.S. remains vigilant about possible revenge terrorist attacks. That was the word this afternoon from White House spokesman Jay Carney. He was responding to the news earlier today about a pair of suicide bombings in Northwest Pakistan. The blast killed about 80 people, most of them paramilitary police recruits. The Pakistani Taliban took responsibility and claimed the attacks were the first of many acts of revenge for Bin Laden's killing. The BBC's Aleem Maqbool is in Islamabad. He says Pakistan may be coming face to face with the consequences of years of ambivalent policies toward militants on its soil.

Aleem Maqbool: A lot of people are saying that it is the fact that Pakistan discriminated in the past between good militants and bad militants. They'd go after some militants but protect others, that has got Pakistan into this mess. Now that is something that, of course, the Pakistani authorities strenuously deny. They say that all links with militants that they may have had in the past have stopped now in spite of what we are seeing in the last couple of weeks so with the case of Osama Bin Laden. They say they're doing everything they can and their line is, the Pakistani line is that no country has suffered more at the hands of terrorists than Pakistan.

Werman: How are Pakistanis reacting? Are they worried that this kind of horrific attack is going to be duplicated many times now?

Maqbool: They're absolutely worried about that. They're worried about that from the beginning when they heard that Osama Bin Laden had been killed. But there have been attacks before this, so they know that the militants can wreak a lot of havoc if they want to. And really they have been looking for some time, the Pakistanis, for fresh ideas from their leaders to bring an end to this violence. But I think if you speak to Pakistanis as I do day in day out of course, they don't have a great deal of faith that that new thinking is coming. And actually, they don't have a great deal of faith in accountability here. Right as we speak Marco, the military chiefs are appearing before parliament to answer questions about the whole Osama Bin Laden affair; about how he was here, how he went undetected, and why it took American forces to come and kill him, and why the Pakistanis didn't do it. And actually a lot of questions as well, I have to say, about how the Americans managed to carry out an operation without the Pakistanis knowing. But again, Pakistanis just don't feel they're gonna get the answers that they want.

Werman: The BBC's Aleem Maqbool in Islamabad.