Pakistani university briefly reopens after militant attack

AP News
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Posted: Jan 25, 2016 10:23 AM
Pakistani university briefly reopens after militant attack

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — The Pakistani university where Islamic militants gunned down 21 students and teachers last week briefly reopened amid tight security Monday before closing again, officials said.

The Bacha Khan University will be closed indefinitely for repairs and to give students and faculty more time to recover from the incident, university spokesman Saeed Khan said, adding that the decision would be revisited in a week's time.

Students who returned to the campus Monday saw blood stains on the floor of a men's dormitory, bullet holes in walls and shattered windows.

Militants from a breakaway Taliban group stormed the university in the northwestern town of Charsadda last Wednesday, setting off an hours-long gunbattle with security forces in an attack the insurgents said was in revenge for the killing of fellow militants.

The attack revived memories of the December 2014 Taliban assault on a nearby army-run school in Peshawar, which killed some 150 people, nearly all of them children.

All four attackers who took part in the Charsadda assault were killed. Over the weekend, authorities announced the arrest of five others suspected of involvement.

Khan said the university has submitted a list of demands to the government, including the extension of the perimeter fence to 10 feet (three meters) high, the clearing of farmland within 100 feet (30 meters) of the campus and the widening of the main road to the school.

They have asked that a retired military officer be appointed head of campus security and that guards be issued modern weapons. They are also requesting that teachers be granted licenses to carry arms.