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Posted by r2d2 03/01/2009 @ 08:37

Tags : islamabad, pakistan, asia, world

News headlines
Efforts Underway to Aid Displaced in Pakistan - Voice of America
Wednesday, the US Embassy in Islamabad said urgently needed humanitarian aid provided by the United States has arrived in the country. The shipments include air-conditioned tents, 120000 pre-packed meals, and other supplies for those displaced in North...
Brown for Pakistan action over 26/11 - Hindu
Without directly referring to Indian allegations of cross-border terrorism, Mr. Brown highlighted the need for Pakistan to do more to fight terrorism at home and said he was trying to persuade Islamabad to “focus” on the issue....
Pakistan diary: Unity in adversity -
Mirabadi Village - just outside of Islamabad - is a slum village. It's dusty, with narrow cobbled streets, open sewers and poor house workers. The type, although not Pakistan's poorest, that have little. But even here amongst the heat and barefoot...
Pakistan Increases Plutonium Separation Capacity, Experts Say - Global Security Newswire
Satellite photographs from 2002 through 2006 indicate that Islamabad is building a second plutonium separation facility at the Khushab nuclear complex. Images also suggest that work has resumed on an unfinished separation plant dating back to the 1970s...
Islamabad defends 'indispensable' nuclear weapons - Financial Times
The issue has raised concerns in the US, where the administration favours increasing civilian assistance to Islamabad with military aid, in spite of complaints that Pakistan used past assistance to improve resources to combat India rather than focus on...
Shabbir allowed to play golf at Islamabad Club - Daily Times
ISLAMABAD: The dispute between the Islamabad Golf Club (IGC) and Pakistan top golfer Shabbir Iqbal has been resolved and the club management has allowed the professional player to resume his game at the IGC. A committee, comprising IGC president...
Iran, Pakistan to hold more IPI talks - United Press International
ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, May 20 (UPI) -- Iran and Pakistan will hold another round of negotiations on the Iran-Pakistan-India gas pipeline at a meeting scheduled Saturday in Tehran, officials said. Asim Hussain, the top energy adviser to Islamabad,...
Pak prepares plan to deal with bomb attacks, hostage taking - Hindu
Islamabad (PTI): Authorities here have drawn up a plan to deal with contingencies like bomb attacks and hostage taking following reports that militants could enter cities in the guise of people displaced by military operations against the Taliban in...
India's Challenges - New York Times
A report in The Times on Monday reminds us just how dangerous: The United States believes Islamabad is rapidly expanding a nuclear arsenal thought to already contain 80 to 100 weapons. We have consistently supported appropriate military aid and...
FEER(5/1) Time To Get Tough With Pakistan - Wall Street Journal
Pakistan's problems then -- protesters clogging the streets of Islamabad demanding President Musharraf's resignation, and sporadic Taliban raids on coalition forces in Afghanistan -- were but a glimpse of the danger ahead. No one could have imagined...

International Islamic University, Islamabad

International Islamic University, Islamabad

The International Islamic University, Islamabad (Arabic: الجامعة الإسلامية العالمية إسلام آباد), an international seat of Islamic learning in Pakistan to provide every opportunity for an all round and harmonious development of individuals and society and reconstruction of human thought in all its forms on the foundation of Islam.

The foundation of the International Islamic University, Islamabad was laid on November 11, 1980. The desire to produce scholar and practitioners, imbued with Islamic Learning, character and personality, and capable to meet the economic, social, political, technological and intellectual needs of the Muslim Ummah was the raison d'être of this university. The University was reconstituted as International Islamic University, Islamabad with the promulgation of ordinance of 1985.

The university's Old Campus is located around the popular Faisal Mosque, a symbol of international Islamic brotherhood and unity. It was designed by a famous Turkish architect and was donated to the university by late King Faisal of Saudi Arabia. The mosque is spread over an area of 189,705 sq.meters and can accommodate about 80 thousand people.

The New Campus is located in Sector H-10 of Islamabad. That whole sector is given solely to this university. Construction of the first phase was completed in February 2003 and this has enabled the university to expand its academic programs. A separate Women's Campus has also been established. Central Library construction was completed in 2006, along with the Lincoln corner.

The Government of Pakistan very generously allotted Islamabad, Sector H-10, comprising 704 acres (2.85 km2) of land, to enable the University to construct and shift to its own new premises and meet its ever increasing needs.

At present three academic blocks while two under construction and Eleven hostel blocks (Seven for male and Four for female) have been completed 'and all University faculties are now functioning in new buildings with effect from January, 2002. In addition one academic block and two hostel blocks have also been completed and became functional for the Women Campus of the University.

As envisaged in the Master Plan of the new campus, the University will be completed in phases of which Stage-I of Phase-I has reached culmination while stage-II is nearing completion. When constructed in its entirety, the University will accommodate 30,000 students (20,000 male and 10,000 female) in 22-25 faculties. In addition, there will be 57 hostel blocks for male students and 28 for female and partial accommodation for teaching/research and administrative staff.

The layout of the campus and all the buildings to be constructed there have been designed by renowned architects. Due regard has been paid to landscaping and providing a suitable background to all the structures. The architectural is a judicious blend of the modern and traditional Islamic styles, in keeping with the spirit of the International University.

Apart from the administrative blocks and teaching departments, the buildings of the various institutes and academies and the hostels, there is to be a beautiful central mosque and a unique central library. Provision has been made for a commercial center and shops for the resident staff and the students. Altogether the total campus when complete will be an attractive addition to the existing architectural charms of Islamabad.

The major source of knowledge of the university is the central library serving as the knowledge backbone for research and development regarding all the streams that are being offered by the university. It is one of the biggest libraries of Asia regarding Islamic learning and rare research materials. The library contains huge collection of books, journals, research projects and international magazines. The number of estimated books in the library is 1.5 million.

Lincoln corner is situated in Central Library. It contains all the material on American History. Lincoln corner is equipped with multimedia projectors, DVD players, broadband Internet, etc.

International institute of Islamic economics provides all facilities regarding research on Islamic economics. It is a heavily funded library and contains very rare books on Islamic law and Islamic way of running the govt. system. The books and research materials are exceeding the limits of 100,000.

Islamic Research Institute library is the source of knowledge regarding different levels of the Islamic research. This library contains a large amount of books that are exceeding the limits of 100,000.

In terms of science & technology the library contains 25,000 books and 15 periodicals are also subscribed. Ten newspapers are purchased for the benefit of the users. The Library has seating arrangement for 50 users at a time. The library also has 550 research reports/theses. The library provides 12 hour service daily to the students. With the introduction of new programs, the collection will grow very rapidly in the near future.

Dawah Library has been developed in period of more than two decades from zero level to a level where it is now capable of adequately supporting the research, training and publication programmes of Dawah Academy. More than 22,000 books on different subjects are available here.

Each department of the university has its own small libray as well.

A number of competent and qualified teachers who specialize in Shariah, Usul al Din wa Da’wah, Arabic Language and other subjects are provided on deputation by these universities.

International Islamic University holds an honor of being one of the biggest university of Pakistan offering 72 different Bachelors and Masters programs. The Electronics department of the university was recently accredited by Pakistan Engineering Council. The University lists of more than 130 Ph. D Professors.

The University has started numerous activities to favour students and staff. The Project of Wireless Internet access to old and new campus has been initiated. The University is also providing laptops to students and staff at economical monthly installments.

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Islamabad is located in Pakistan

Islamabad (help·info) (Urdu: اسلام آباد) Islāmabād (Meaning "Abode of Islam") is the capital of Pakistan, and is the tenth largest city in Pakistan. The Rawalpindi/Islamabad metropolitan area is the third largest in Pakistan with a population of over 4.5 million inhabitants, 1.5 million in Islamabad and three million in Rawalpindi.

Islamabad is located in the Potohar Plateau in the north of the country, within the Islamabad Capital Territory. The region has historically been a part of the crossroads of Punjab and the North-West Frontier Province, Margalla pass being a gateway to the North-West Frontier Province.

The city was built during the 1960s to replace Karachi as Pakistan's capital. However the capital was not moved directly from Karachi to Islamabad but first moved from Karachi to Rawalpindi then to Islamabad. The development of the country was focused on Karachi and President Ayub Khan wanted it to be equally distributed.

Islamabad is one of the most well-planned cities in South Asia. The city is well-organized and divided into different sectors and zones. Islamabad is also home to the Faisal Masjid which is well known for its architecture and immense size.

The relatively young city of Islamabad has over thousands of years of history in its record books. Islamabad Capital Territory, located in the Pothohar Plateau, is regarded to be one of the earliest sites of human settlement in Asia. Situated at one end of the Indus Valley Civilization, this area was the first habitation of the Aryan community from Central Asia. Islamabad was one of the routes though which the armies from North and North West passed to invade India. Many great armies such as those of Alexander the Great, Genghis Khan, Timur and Nader Shah have used this route on their way to India. Relics and human skulls have been found dating back to 5000 B.C. that show this region was home to Stone Age man who used the banks of Swaan River as their settlement.

In 1958, a commission was constituted to select a suitable site for the National Capital with particular emphasis on location, climate, logistics and defence requirements along with other attributes. After extensive study, research and thorough review of various sites, the commission recommended the area Northeast of Rawalpindi. A Greek firm of architects Konstantinos Apostolos Doxiadis designed the master plan of the city which was triangular in shape, based on a Grid plan, with its apex towards the Margalla Hills.

The city is situated at the edge of the Pothohar plateau, south of the Margalla Hills. The modern capital Islamabad and the ancient Gakhar city of Rawalpindi stand side by side, displaying the country’s past and present. The area's micro-climate is regulated by three man-made lakes (Rawal, Simli and Khanpur Dam). The city overall has an extreme climate with hot summers with monsoon rains occurring during July and August, and fairly cold winters with sparse snowfall over the hills and sleet in the city. The weather ranges from a minimum of −3.9 °C (25.0 °F) in January to a maximum of 46.1 °C (115.0 °F) in June.

The modern city of Islamabad was envisaged as the new capital of Pakistan in the 1960s. In the mid 1960's the capital was shifted from Karachi to Islamabad, with most of the Government machinery shifting to Islamabad, along with the foreign embassies, though off-shoots of some of these remain even today in Karachi. The city was built as a planned city and has been divided into various sectors on a "grid". One axis is indexed numerically, the other alphabetically.

The Islamabad area has surprising religious diversity of considerable antiquity. A shrine of Sufi Pir Mehar Ali Shah is at Golra while the shrine of Shah Abdul Latif Kazmi is in Nurpur Shahan. Saidpur Village hosts Hindu temples that have striking architecture and "Bethak of Zinda Pir" which is famous for the traditional lamps (diyas).

Islamabad and Rawalpindi are twin cities with just a highway separating them. Both cities, combined with Taxila and other adjoining areas, form the Islamabad/Rawalpindi Metropolitan Area with total population exceeding 5 million.

Islamabad is one of the few cities in Pakistan that is a planned city with a well-developed infrastructure due to which it made its entry into the list of the most well-planned cities in South Asia. This along with its picturesque location at the base of Margalla Hills make it a favourite destination with tourists. The sculpted gardens of Islamabad's Shakar Parian Hills, newly constructed National Monument, the fascinating Heritage Museum, and the huge marble Shah Faisal Mosque are the major highlights of the city.

Faisal Mosque was constructed on the suggestion of King Faisal bin Abdul Aziz. With the area of over 5000 square meters and a capacity of over 300,000 worshippers, it is the biggest mosque in Pakistan and one of the biggest in the world. The newly constructed Lake View Park alongside Rawal Lake has become a favourite picnic spot in the city.

The city's pleasant climate has enabled the introduction of many exotic plants to the area. There is also much wildlife in the north in the Margalla hills, which have been turned into a national park. The Margalla hills are home to various species of wild life including a variety of exotic birds and carnivores such as the rare and presently endangered Margalla leopards.

According to the 1998 census, Punjabis account for 71% of the population followed by the Muhajirs at around 10%, Pashtun at 10% and others (Sindhis, Balochis, Kashmiris etc) at 9%. The city is also host to many foreigners from around the globe and families of dignitaries.

The main language spoken in Islamabad is Urdu which is predominantly used within the city due to an ethnic mix of populations. English, being the official language of Pakistan is also commonly understood. Other languages include Punjabi, Pothohari and Pashto.

Islamabad's architecture walks a tight-rope between modernity and tradition. The Saudi-Pak Tower is a good example of the combination of modern and traditional styles into one building. The beige-coloured edifice is trimmed with blue tilework in Islamic tradition, and is one of Islamabad's tallest buildings.

Other examples of intertwined Islamic and modern architecture include Pakistan Monument and Faisal Mosque. The murals on the inside of large petals of Pakistan Monument are based on Islamic architecture, and were decorated by a team of artists led by Kausar Jahan and Zarar Haider Babri, who spent a total of 119,000 hours on the artwork. The relatively unusual design of Shah Faisal Mosque fuses contemporary lines with the more traditional look of an Arab Bedouin's tent with large triangular prayer hall and four minarets. The mosque's architecture is a departure from the long history of South Asian Muslim architecture. However, in some ways it makes a bridge between Arabic, Turkish and Pakistani Muslim architectural traditions.

One of the examples of modern architecture in Islamabad is the under construction Centaurus. The complex is designed by WS Atkins PLC, whose portfolio includes the Burj al-Arab and Jumeirah Beach Hotel in Dubai, and the Bahrain World Trade Centre in Bahrain.

Most of Pakistan's state-owned companies like PIA, PTV, PTCL, OGDCL etc. are based in Islamabad's Blue Area. The City is also home to many branches of Karachi-based companies, banks, TV channels etc.

Islamabad Stock Exchange is Pakistan's third largest stock exchange after Karachi and Lahore.

Recently, Islamabad has seen an expansion of information and communications technology with the addition two Software Technology Parks which house numerous national and foreign technological and IT companies. Call centres for foreign companies have been targeted as another significant area of growth, with the government making efforts to reduce taxes by as much as 10% in order to encourage foreign investments in the IT sector.

Islamabad is connected to the major destinations around the world through an international airport called "Benazir Bhutto International Airport". All major cities and towns are accessible through regular trains and bus services running mostly from the neighboring city of Rawalpindi which is considered a gateway town between north and south. Lahore and Peshawar are linked to Islamabad through a network of modern and rapid motorways which has resulted in a significant reduction in traveling times between these cities. Rawalpindi and Islamabad are also connected through a network of local buses and mini vans. For more convenient traveling, a $2 taxi ride covers most urban areas within the twin cities metropolitan.

The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has intended to carry out a feasibility and reference design for a rapid mass transit system for the twin-cities of Islamabad and Rawalpindi. On April 5, 2007, Federal Minister for Railways Sheikh Rashid Ahmed said that a railway station would be built near the planned Islamabad Airport at Fateh Jang to facilitate passengers called "New Islamabad International Airport". The New Islamabad International Airport is a 3,600-acre (15 km2) international airport that is being built to serve the city of Islamabad, Pakistan. The airport is located in Fateh Jang, which is 30 km south-west of the city. Construction of the airport began in April 2007, after a decade long postponement. It is expected to be completed and operational in approximately three years. It will then take all the commercial flights that are currently operating out of the Islamabad International Airport. The Airport will be named as "Gandhara International Airport" after the ancient Buddhist kingdom.Estimated to cost about $400 million, the new Airport facility, which is the first green-field airport in Pakistan, shall comprise a contemporary state-of-the-art passenger terminal building, control tower, runway with a provision of a secondary runway, taxiways, apron, cargo complex, and hangar together with all the necessary infrastructure and ancillary facilities. It would cater to the requirements of latest generation of modern passenger aircraft.

In 1959, a site on the northwest of the newly independent Pakistan was chosen and named Islamabad. Doxiadis Associates of Athens were commissioned to design the master plan in 1960. Islamabad is located on an area of 909 sq.m at the foot of the Himalaya mountain range. An autonomous governmental body was established for the implementation of the master plan under the name The Capital Development Authority (CDA). The landscaping of Islamabad was carried out by Derek Lovejoy and Partners in collaboration with many other designers.

Islamabad is divided into eight zones: the diplomatic enclave, the commercial district, the educational sector, the industrial area and so on, each with its own shopping area and park. Each sector is identified by a letter of the Roman alphabet and a number, and covers an area of approximately 2 km x 2 km (11⁄4 x 11⁄4 mi). Each sector is further divided into 4 sub-sectors. The sectors currently in use are lettered from D to I.

Currently, there is only one D sector, D-12. Although this sector is underdeveloped with its development to be completed in 2008, it will be considered as one of the most beautiful sectors of Islamabad because of its location near the Margalla Hills. However, in the revised Master Plan, CDA has decided to develop new sectors including D-13 and D-14.

The E sectors are numbered from E-6 to E-18. Many foreigners and diplomatic personnel are housed in this sector. But with new revised Master Plan, CDA has decided to develop a park on the patterns of F-9 park in sector E-14. Sector E-8 and E-9 contain the campuses of three Defense universities Bahria University (Sector E-8), Air University (Sector E-9) and National Defence College (now National Defence University).

The F sectors are numbered F-5 through F-12. F-5 is an important sector for the software industry in Islamabad, as both of the two software technology parks are located here. The entire sector of F-9 is dedicated for the Fatima Jinnah Park. The Centaurus complex (including a 7 star plaza, 5 star hotel and apartments) will be one of the major landmarks of F-8.

The G sectors are numbered G-5 through G-16. Some important landmarks include the Convention Center and Serena Hotel in G-5, the Lal Mosque and Melody Market in G-6, the Karachi Company shopping center in G-9 (named after a construction company from Karachi who made one of the first flats in this area in and around 1978) and the Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences (PIMS) hospital in G-8 which is the largest medical complex in the capital and is hence also known by the locals as simply the 'Complex Hospital.' The Institute is a national centre of excellence and tertiary referral centre. With its own helipad it was the focal point of rescue missions and the point of referral for the most seriously wounded in the Northern Areas earthquake of 2005.

The H sectors are numbered H-7 through H-12. The H sectors are mostly dedicated to educational and health institutions. Sector H-12 is allocated to National University of Science and Technology (NUST) for construction of its new campus.

The I sectors are numbered I-8 through I-18. Except for I-8, these sectors are primarily set aside as part of the industrial zone. Only Two sub-sectors of Sector I-9 and one sub-sector of sector I-10 is used as Industrial Area. Sector I-11 is proposed site of a state-of-art Vegetable and Fruit Market. CDA has planned to relocate the operating Veg. and Fruit market from I-11 to Sangjani. Sector I-15 is a new sector for Low-income group. CDA is planning to set up Islamabad Railway Station in Sector I-18 and Industrial City in proposed sector I-17.

The road separating I sector from Rawalpindi is called I J Principal road.

A large number of public and private sector educational institutes are present in Islamabad. The higher education institutes in the capital are either federally chartered or administered by private organizations and almost all of them are recognized by the Higher Education Commission of Pakistan. High schools and colleges are either affiliated with the Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education or with the UK universities education boards (A/O Levels, IGCSE etc.). According to AEPM's (Academy of Educational Planning And Management, Ministry of Education) Pakistan Education Statistics 2006-07 report, there are total 904 recognized institutions in Islamabad, out of which 30 are pre-primary, 2 are religious schools (Deeni Madaris/Mosques), 384 are primary, 157 are middle, 232 are high (10 years of education), 59 are higher secondary (12 years of education), 15 are inter and 25 are degree colleges. 7 teacher training institutes are also running in Islamabad with a total enrollment of 581,068 students and 491 teaching faculty .

Gender Parity Index in Islamabad is 0.93 out of 0.95 for Pakistan. There are 178 boys only institutes, 175 girls and 551 mixed institutes in the capital territory . Total enrollment of students in all categories is 273583, 139961 for boys and 133,622 for girls .

There are 17 recognized universities in Islamabad with a total enrollment of 279,820 students and 25,653 teachers . The world's largest university Allama Iqbal Open University is located in Islamabad. The two top engineering universities in Pakistan, Pakistan Institute of Engineering & Applied Sciences(PIEAS) and National University of Science and Technology (NUST) also have their headquarters in the capital. Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad is ranked the best university in Pakistan in general category. Other notable universities include Fatima Jinnah Women University, a female only university, Hamdard University, the largest and the most popular private university of the country, National Defence University, Shifa College of Medicine, and National University of Modern Languages.

In 2006-2007, the Federal Government spend a total of 54,523.637 million Rs. on the education sector out of which 25,830.670 million was developmental fund . This amount is 25.18% of the total educational budget spend in that year, which was 216,518.059 million Rs. The public expenditure on education as percentage of total government expenditure that year was 14.09% .

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Islamabad Marriott Hotel bombing

Marriot Hotel Islamabad Pakistan bombing.jpg

The Islamabad Marriott Hotel bombing occurred on 20 September 2008, when a dump truck filled with explosives detonated in front of the Marriott Hotel in the Pakistani capital Islamabad, killing at least 54, injuring at least 266 and leaving a 60 ft (20 m) wide, 20 ft (6 m) deep crater outside the hotel. The majority of the casualties were Pakistanis; although at least five foreigners were killed and fifteen others reported injured. The attack occurred mere hours after President Asif Ali Zardari made his first speech to parliament. The Marriott was the most prestigious hotel in the capital, located near government buildings and diplomatic missions. It was popular with foreigners and the Pakistani elite. The hotel had previously been the target of militants. In 2007, a suicide bomber killed himself and another person in an attack at the hotel.

The Islamabad Marriott reopened on December 28.

The blast caused a natural gas leak that set the top floor of the five-story, 258-room hotel on fire, police said. The massive explosion was heard 15 kilometres away. The blaze that followed quickly engulfed the entire structure of the hotel. About two-thirds of the building caught fire as a result of the explosion after a natural gas pipe was blown open, and the reception area was completely destroyed.

The owner of the hotel, Hashoo Group, owned by Sadruddin Hashwani, who is an Ismaili Shia, said the truck carrying the bomb had been stopped at the front barrier. "Some shots were fired. One of our guards fired back, and in the meantime he detonated all the explosives. All the guards on the gate died," said hotel owner Sadruddin Hashwani.

After the attack, vans were temporarily banned from entering the capital territory.

Most of the dead were Pakistani, but foreigners also died. Two American military personnel and a Danish intelligence agent were killed, and a U.S. State Department employee was missing and presumed dead. The Czech ambassador to Pakistan, Dr. Ivo Žďárek, also died in the ensuing fire along with his Vietnamese companion. Although Žďárek had survived the initial blast, he returned to the hotel to help in the rescue effort but was trapped in the burning building. In addition, six Germans, four Britons and a Filipina receptionist from the hotel were among the injured.

Pakistan's top leaders were to have been in the Islamabad Marriott hotel when it was bombed; instead, having changed their plans at the last minute, they gathered for dinner at the Prime Minister's house, a few hundred yards from the explosion, following President Asif Ali Zardari maiden address to a joint session of parliament. "The national assembly speaker had arranged a dinner for the entire leadership - for the president, prime minister and armed services chiefs - at the Marriott that day," the Interior ministry head, Rehman Malik, told reporters.

Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik said both Zardari and Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani condemned the attack and vowed their determination to deal with terrorism, with Law Minister Farooq Naek stating "this is Pakistan's 9/11".

Government advisor Rehman Malik said RDX and TNT were used in the attack. Approximately 600 kg of RDX was mixed with TNT (Torpex or H6) and a mixture of mortar and ammunition to increase the explosive capacity. Aluminum powder was also mixed with the material to further enhance this capability. Torpex is about fifty percent more powerful than TNT by weight. The blast was heard for many miles throughout the capital.

Pakistan released the CCTV footage of the attack at a press conference saying that a six-wheeled dumper truck filled with explosives and an accelerant pulled up at the gate and first caught fire before exploding a few minutes later.

An unnamed senior security official stated that about 30 U.S. Marines, scheduled to go to Afghanistan, were staying at the hotel, and they were believed to be the targets of the bombing. This conflicted with information given by another unnamed official who stated that the marines were in Pakistan in connection with the visit by US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen who met the Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani and other government officials on Wednesday The personnel were staying on the fourth floor of the hotel, which also the most severely damaged by the fire which ensued following the bomb blast. According to the Dawn, a number of the marines who stayed at the hotel sustained injuries; the newspaper also cited an unnamed law enforcement official stating "personnel of a US security agency" were in all likelihood the target of the attack. There are also reports that more Americans were present at the hotel, as several senior CIA officers were visiting Islamabad at the time of the attack and believed to be staying at the hotel, according to unnamed "well placed sources".

An MP for the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party, Syed Mumtaz Alam Gillani, has come forward with testimony evidencing a purportedly serious security breach at the Marriott on the night between the 16th and 17th, several days before the bombing. Alam Gillani and two friends are said to have witnessed several large steel boxes being unloaded from a US Embassy truck by a group of US Marines and, according to someone at the hotel, transported to the fourth and fifth floors. Among the several people who witnessed this incident was Pakistan Peoples Party leader Sajjad Chaudhry. However, Alam Gilani was the only one who objected to and protested the apparent security breach taking place, but was met with silence from the American Marines. The hotel security staff did not respond to Alam Gilani's protests as they passively watched what was taking place, not being allowed to go near the boxes by the US Marines. Alam Gillani has since denounced the newspaper account, asserting that he was merely making light conversation with the journalist, however, the newspaper stands by its account. Pakistani authorities are also investigating this issue.

The American Embassy has said that it routinely rents rooms at the Marriott. Confronted with the activities of the US Marines on the night between September 16 and 17, embassy spokesperson Lou Fintor stated: "A team of support personnel often and routinely precede and/or accompany certain US government officials. They often carry communication and office equipment required to support large delegations, such as high-level administration officials and members of the US Congress." However, the incident occurred after Admiral Mullen's departure.

President Asif Ali Zardari was considering delaying his visit to the US to attend the UN General Assembly session in the wake of the bombing. MP Ayaz Amir said that he felt that the president should cancel his visit given the circumstances, and instead should combat terrorism and extremism. He added, "I believe that the UN General Assembly annual session is the most useless event in the world where leaders go to listen their own speeches." However, Zardari did make it New York for the opening of the new session of the General Assembly.

Some investigators suspect an Islamist group, Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami, is responsible for the attack based upon the similarities between this incident and four previous attacks allegedly conducted by its operatives.

Dubai-based Arabiya Television says a group calling itself Fedayeen Islam (also spelled Fedayan-i-Islam), variously translated as "Islamic Commandos" or "Islamic Patriots" has called Arabiya's correspondent in the Pakistani capital, Islamabad. The correspondent said he received a text message on his mobile phone showing a telephone number. He said he called the number and then heard a recording in which the group admitted launching Saturday's attack. The Arabiya television correspondent says the speaker spoke in English with a South Asian accent. The Fedayeen Islam group has issued several demands including for Pakistan to stop its cooperation with the United States..

Many people are of the view that a foreign power is involved in the attacks in some way.

On January 1, 2009 a missile fired from an unmanned aerial vehicle killed al-Qaeda's Pakistan operations chief, Usama al-Kini. U.S. officials stated that they believed that Kini masterminded the hotel bombing, among other attacks.

The "Islamabad Marriott Assistance Fund" was started by the owner of the hotel as the blast and resulting fires killed about 40 hotel staff, including the security guards who had desperately tried to avert the disaster. While scores of other employees were also wounded.

Sadruddin Hashwani said: "We have set up a fund to cater for the future expenses of the families of employees either killed or wounded in the attack." He announced that he would make an initial donation of Pakistani Rs 1 crore (US$126,000) to the fund, and appealed for people to donate generously.

The Marriott International and The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation also made contributions to the fund, established through United Way to provide financial assistance to the associates and their families affected by the tragedy.

Three men, Dr Usman, Rana Ilyas and Hameed Afzal, that were arrested in Peshawar on October 17 with connection to the attack were remanded to police custody for 7 days on October 18 for questioning by an anti-terrorism court. They were suspected of having facilitated the suicide bomber. In requesting the court for a 10 day remand, the police also said they hoped to arrest more suspects with information from the three. Judge Sakhi Muhammad Kahut, who remanded the trio to police custody, also ordered police to produce them in court again on October 24.

A panel that the government had formed, consisting of police officials and experts from security agencies to probe the attack, presented a preliminary report to the Prime Minister. The Interior Secretary Syed Kamal Shah also admitted to the Senate's Standing Committee on his ministry that the blast was the result of a defective security system. He added that the Islamabad police chief has said intelligence agencies had informed the police about an explosive-laden vehicle entering the city to carry out an attack.

On October 23, it was reported that four men had been arrested on suspicion of "indirect involvement" in the attack, according to Islamabad police. These four are the first known arrests in relation to the bombing.

The attack that left the Kenyan embassy in Islamabad damaged. The Permanent Secretary in the Foreign Affairs ministry Mwangi Thuita confirmed the incidence. The blast only shattered windows and doors of the embassy.

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Source : Wikipedia