Pakistan’s former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto was assassinated Thursday after addressing a large gathering of her supporters.
Bhutto died of a gunshot wound to the neck, the Pakistani Interior Ministry said. The attacker then blew himself up. The bomb attack killed at least 22 others, doctors said.
Video of the scene just moments before the explosion showed Bhutto stepping into a heavily guarded vehicle to leave the rally.
John Moore, a photographer for Getty Images, said Bhutto was standing through the sunroof of her vehicle, waving to supporters, when two shots rang out.
Bhutto fell back into the vehicle, and almost immediately a bomb blast rocked the scene, sending twisting metal and shrapnel into the crowd, he added.
Police sources told CNN the bomber, who was riding a motorcycle, blew himself up near Bhutto’s vehicle.
Bhutto was rushed to Rawalpindi General Hospital — less than two miles from the bombing scene — where doctors pronounced her dead.
Her body was removed from the hospital — carried above a crowd of supporters — late Thursday night, about six hours after the assassination.
Chaos erupted at the hospital when former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrived to pay his respects to Bhutto less than three hours after her death. [full story]
I personally feel a lot of shock and sorrow to hear of this. Regardless of how I felt about Bhutto’s politics, I deeply respect a woman who had the strength and courage to fight for democracy for the people and the country she loved.