01/10/2014, 00.00
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Pakistan mourns the death of two heroes of the struggle against Islamic extremism

A "super - cop " who led numerous raids against Taliban and fundamentalist fringes was killed in an attack in Karachi. Already targeted in the past. There are growing demands of honors for the young man who sacrificed himself to save his school, and his companions, from a suicide bomber.

Islamabad ( AsiaNews / Agencies) - Pakistani civil society and activists are honoring the memory of two different personalities who have sacrificed their lives in the common struggle against the Islamic extremism that has bloodied the country for years . Yesterday Chaudhry Aslam , head of the local anti-terrorism , law enforcement officer longtime and well-known face in the battle against the Taliban, was killed in an attack in Karachi. Meanwhile, mourning continues for the young student who , on January 6 , sacrificed himself to defend his school in Hangu , a town in the province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa , from a suicide bomber.

Two other people were killed in the attack against the super- cop in Karachi. Chaudhry Aslam was aboard a police convoy, near the area of Essa Nagri when a half-load of explosives was detonated. The explosion devastated many cars and several buildings in the area. In the past he had been the subject of attacks, which, however, he had always managed to escape .

The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack , pointing out that they had killed the policeman because in the past he had " murdered , tortured and injured " members of the extremist militias . Moreover Aslam had often preferred to use brute force in his war against the militants, killing combatants on the spot rather than arrest them and bring them in front of a judge.

Meanwhile, tributes continue to arrive and celebrations are still ongoing in memory of Aitzaz Hasan, the 15-year old student who sacrificed his life to prevent a suicide bomber attacking his school causing a massacre among students. On 6 January, the boy was outside the building when he saw a man wearing a vest laden with explosives. Despite the appeal of his friends , he faced the bomber who - to avoid being caught - activated the detonator.

Nasir Khan Durrani , chief of police of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, has called for the highest civilian honor to be bestowed on this young man posthumously for his heroic gesture of " valor and courage", that has saved the life " of hundreds of innocent students ." Even on social networks posts of sympathy and condolences are multiplying and in the past few hours he has become a true national hero. The attack took place in the Shiite enclave in a nation where the vast majority of the inhabitants profess Sunni Islam and recorded in recent years a gradual Islamization , with attacks targeted towards individuals and communities belonging to minorities.

In the past, the Taliban and Pakistani extremists have targeted schools and educational institutions - particularly women - in the country , considering education as a taboo . In contrast , activists and members of civil society have emphasized the educational challenge ( to which AsiaNews has dedicated a special dossier in the past) , as one of the key factors to promote the rebirth of the nation.


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