Quetta brought to halt by attack
Hobbits lure tourists to New Zealand
Figures released yesterday reveal that tourism has overtaken dairy as New Zealand’s top earner of overseas dollars. And tourism officials say the success of the fantasy movie trilogy The Hobbit has helped. The dairy industry is struggling to recover from a slump in prices, while a record 3.4 million visitors arrived in New Zealand in the year ending September. The Pacific nation is particularly popular among tourists from Australia, China and the US. Spending by international tourists was up by 20 per cent in the year ending March when compared with the previous year. Pakistan’s city of Quetta was completely shut down yesterday following a militant rampage at a police academy the day before while families buried 60 police cadets and an army officer killed in the attack – one of the deadliest targeting Pakistani security forces in recent years. The assault, in which unarmed cadets and police trainees – many of whom were asleep in their dorms when the attack started – jumped from windows and rooftops, fleeing for their lives, saw troops battle the attackers for four hours before the siege was over. The academy houses about 700 cadets, nearly all in their early 20s. Local Quetta hospitals were treating 123 wounded from the attack. In conflicting claims, an ISIS affiliate and a Taliban splinter group both said they were behind the attack in Quetta, the capital of Baluchistan province. But officials later said they intercepted communication between the attackers and their purported handlers in Afghanistan, blaming an Al Qaeda and Taliban-linked group, Lashkare-Jhangvi Al Almi, for the assault.
FUNERAL: A victim is laid to rest