Gunmen attack police academy in Pakistani city of Quetta

Gul Yusufzai, Reuters

Posted at Oct 25 2016 07:39 AM

QUETTA, Pakistan - Gunmen stormed a Pakistani police training academy in the southwestern city of Quetta late on Monday night, killing at least two people and wounding dozens, officials said.

Some 200 trainees are stationed at the facility, officials said, and some had been taken hostage.

"Around five terrorists entered police training center and they have taken police recruits (at) gunpoint," a senior security official in Quetta said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the press.

No militant group immediately claimed responsibility for the assault.

Mir Sarfaraz Bugti, home minister of Baluchistan province, of which Quetta is the capital, confirmed early on Tuesday that at least five or six gunmen had attacked a hostel where police recruits were staying.

"Two people were killed and 75 are wounded in the attack," police official Mohammad Iqbal said, adding that the condition of 12 of the wounded was serious.

The attack appeared well coordinated, with senior law enforcement agencies saying that assailants had fired at the police training center from five different points, another security official in the area said.

Later, the attackers entered the center's hostel where around 200 to 250 police recruits were resting and sleeping, the security officials said.

By about 1 a.m. Pakistan time, at least three explosions had been reported at the scene by local media, but there was no immediate word of any additional casualties. Gunfire could still be heard, media said.

The Police Training Centre covers about an acre of land located about 13 kilometers outside the main city of Quetta.

(Additional reporting by Mehreen Zahra-Malik in ISLAMABAD; Writing by Kay Johnson; Editing by Catherine Evans, Toni Reinhold)