Pakistani school attack raises security questions
Once again, Islamic militants stormed a school in northeastern Pakistan in a deadly attack that lasted for hours. And once again, the blood of students and teachers stained classrooms and hallways, raising questions about whether security forces are able to protect the country's educational institutions from extremists.
At least 20 people were killed and 23 were wounded Wednesday in the assault at Bacha Khan University in Charsadda before the four gunmen were slain. Two teachers were among the dead, including a chemistry professor who was praised as a hero for shooting back at the attackers and allowing some students to escape.
The university attack was grimly reminiscent of the December 2014 massacre at an army public school in nearby Peshawar that killed 150, mostly children. A breakaway faction of the Taliban took responsibility for the university attack, although a spokesman for the larger Taliban organization denied having anything to do with it and called it “un-Islamic.”
Pakistani women light candles during a vigil for victims of the Bacha Khan University attack, Wednesday in Peshawar, Pakistan.