Karachi Airport Closed By Attack (Updated)
Jinnah Airport in Karachi, Pakistan, remains closed after authorities retook it from at least 10 gunmen with explosives strapped to their bodies who stormed a VIP terminal on Sunday night. At least nine people were killed in the initial attack and more attacks followed. Pakistan says all the terrorists were killed. At least one aircraft on the ground was reportedly destroyed. All passengers were evacuated (some jumped out of windows) and inbound flights were diverted to other airports as the attack continued into early Monday. Several explosions rocked the airport and a huge fire ensued. "I was working at my office when I heard big blasts — several blasts — and then there were heavy gunshots," Sarmad Hussain, a Pakistan International Airways employee, told The Associated Press.
Seven of the early casualties were airport security police, one was a Civil Aviation Authority official and another was an airline employee. The casualty total was expected to rise, however, as a gun battle continued on the airport and army commandos moved in to secure the facility. Latest reports suggested the army had the attackers pinned down in a maintenance area. The airport will be closed until at least Monday night.