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Bomb Rips Through Pakistan Train

June 7, 1998

KARACHI, Pakistan (AP) _ A powerful bomb tore through a train traveling through southern Pakistan on Sunday, killing 26 people and wounding 45, some seriously.

The train was passing through a village 18 miles outside Sukkur, some 120 miles north of Karachi, capital of the southern Sindh province, when the bomb shattered the train just before dawn, police said.

The 18-carriage express, with a capacity to carry 1,800 passengers, was headed toward the northwestern city of Peshawar, police said. Among the dead were four children below age 5.

``When we arrived, the carriage was destroyed and bodies were blown to pieces. Many of the passengers were trapped and shouting for help,″ said ambulance driver Mohammed Hafiz.

The train was later cleared from the tracks, and traffic resumed.

No one immediately took responsibility for the bombing, but the government has blamed rival India for explosions in the neighboring Sindh province and in the eastern Punjab province, which borders India.

The government blamed India for a Friday bombing of a theater that killed three people in eastern Lahore, capital of Punjab province.

Pakistan and India routinely blame each other for acts of terrorism on their soil, but they rarely provide evidence to support their claims.

The two countries have fought three wars since the South Asian subcontinent gained its independence in 1947 from the departing British.

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