28 February 2007

. . . and to think they have The Bomb

Oh Pakistan, when will you tighten up?

I'm all for brevity, but this article must be printed in full.
11 Killed at Pakistani Kite Festival
The Associated Press
Monday, February 26, 2007; 7:25 PM

LAHORE, Pakistan -- At least 11 people were killed and more than 100 people injured by sharpened kite strings, stray bullets and other accidents at an annual kite-flying festival in eastern Pakistan, officials said Monday.

The two-day Basant festival is regularly marred by casualties caused by sharpened kite strings or celebratory gunshots fired into the air. Kite flyers often use strings made of wire or coated with ground glass to try to damage a rival's kite, often after betting on the outcome.

Authorities had banned kite flying following a string of deaths at the festival last year, but temporarily lifted it before this year's event. Officials said the ban was re-imposed following the latest deaths.

Police arrested more than 700 people for using sharpened kite strings or firing guns, and seized nearly 300 illegal weapons during this year's festival, said Aftab Cheema, a senior Lahore police officer.

Five of those who died Sunday were hit by stray bullets, including a 6-year-old boy who was struck in the head, said Ruqia Bano, emergency services spokeswoman in Lahore.

A 16-year-old girl and a 12-year-old boy died after their throats were slashed by metal kite strings in separate incidents. Two people were electrocuted as they tried to recover kites tangled in overhead power cables, and two people fell from roofs, Bano said.


mandy said...

Somebody set us up the kite.

[Not to make light of any deaths, but that is one of the most ridiculous ideas ever: let's take just about the most innocuous and carefree thing -- the kite -- and make it deadly. The next thing you know, kids will be chewing cyanide bubble gum and playing landmine hopscotch.]

Anonymous said...

"...string of deaths..." AP, nice pun!