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Blasts Hit Two Karachi Restaurants

September 8, 2005

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) _ Bomb blasts minutes apart damaged a KFC and a crowded McDonald’s restaurant in the southern Pakistan city of Karachi late Thursday, injuring at least three people, police and witnesses said.

The first bomb went off inside the KFC Karachi’s upscale Defense district as three families were dining, said witness Mohammed Akhtar.

He said the explosion shattered windows and three people, including a girl, were cut by flying glass. Three cars outside were damaged.

Police said the explosive caused considerable damage to the restaurant, including the destruction of a brick wall.

Eight minutes later, a bomb went off outside the McDonald’s on Karachi’s beach front, causing panic but no injuries, police said. There were about 80 people inside the McDonald’s at the time.

Tariq Jamil, the city police chief, said both bombs were homemade and of low intensity.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility but Jamil speculated that the attacks were possibly linked to a nationwide strike called for Friday _ by a hardline Islamic coalition opposed to President Gen. Pervez Musharraf, a key ally in the U.S.-led war on terrorism.

U.S. fast food outlets in Karachi have been targeted before. On May 30, a KFC restaurant was burned and six workers inside were killed during an outbreak of religious sectarian violence in the city.

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