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Last Updated: Friday, 19 October 2007, 14:17 GMT 15:17 UK
Press sees Bhutto role on terror
By Farhana Haider
BBC News, Islamabad

Police investigate the site of the blast
The full horror of the attack is reflected in the newspapers
Most of the front pages of the Pakistani papers have photographs of the carnage from the bomb blasts near Benazir Bhutto's motorcade in the southern city of Karachi.

The horrific pictures show bodies lying on the street covered in blood, and the mangled wreckage of police motorcycles.

A number of editorials said Ms Bhutto's presence in the country may help in the fight against extremism.

Many of those killed were security personnel, 20,000 of whom were deployed in Karachi.

Headlines such as "Benazir survives midnight carnage", "Suicide attack on Benazir" and "Terrorists hit Benazir Bhutto rally" reflected the bloody turn of events.

The inside pages show pictures from earlier on Thursday when more then 100,000 people came to greet the opposition leader for her jubilant return home.

The Dawn newspaper said that "the largely peaceful nature of tens of thousands who gathered to greet Ms Bhutto reiterates the fact that such rallies are not by nature violent.

"Television footage... showed restive citizens awaiting Ms Bhutto, whiling away time singing songs and sipping fruit juices offered by enterprising vendors."

'Extremists'

The editorials reflect the challenges Ms Bhutto now faces.

The Dawn newspaper says that Pakistan must on Friday tackle a host of problems, one of the most critical being terrorism.

It says combating this can only be achieved by Benazir Bhutto reaching out to political opponents.

A Daily Times editorial ran under the headline "Benazir Bhutto needed to balance an extremist political scene"

It said that "the return of Benazir is bound to change the political climate in the coming days... The Pakistan Peoples' Party (PPP) can weigh in to lessen the extremism of Pakistan's opposition."

The News in its editorial says that "fighting terrorism and rooting out militancy is in Pakistan's own interest and vital for our survival but unfortunately - apart from the president - most people, even the ruling party, don't seem too enthusiastic about it.

"Benazir Bhutto's presence in the country could help fill this gap and provide the anti-terror campaign some much-needed legitimacy because right now most Pakistanis - rightly or wrongly - see their country's participation in the war against terror as something dictated by Washington."



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