‘Cruel cowardice, vile’ — Quotes reacting to Taleban attacks

‘Cruel cowardice, vile’ — Quotes reacting to Taleban attacks
Updated 17 December 2014

‘Cruel cowardice, vile’ — Quotes reacting to Taleban attacks

‘Cruel cowardice, vile’ — Quotes reacting to Taleban attacks

The attack by Taleban militants on a school in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Tuesday elicited strong condemnations worldwide, with Germany denouncing it as “cruel cowardice” and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi branding it “a senseless act of unspeakable brutality”.
“The hostage-taking and murder of children exceeds in its cruel cowardice all that Pakistan, stricken by years of terror and violence, has known before. We mourn with the people of Pakistan the victims of this bloody terrorist attack. Our hearts go out to the families of the victims. For the many injured we wish speedy recoveries,” German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in a statement.
Modi said India shares rival Pakistan’s pain. “My heart goes out to everyone who lost their loved ones today. We share their pain & offer our deepest condolences,” he said.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh earlier said the attack, one of the bloodiest in Pakistan in recent years, exposed the “real face of terrorism.”
“This dastardly & inhuman attack exposes the real face of terrorism. My heart goes out to the families of those children who got killed by the terrorists in Peshawar.”
Witnesses described how gunmen went from classroom to classroom, shooting children, after a huge blast shook the Army Public School.
The Tehreek-e-Taleban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the attack as retaliation for a major military offensive in the region, saying militants had been ordered to shoot older students.
India has repeatedly urged Pakistan to rein in militant groups operating on its soil.
India and Pakistan have fought three wars since independence in 1947, and deadly attacks on Mumbai by Pakistan-based militants dealt a blow to tentative peace talks in 2008.

Vile, ignominious
In Paris, French President Francois Hollande described the attack as “vile” as he expressed solidarity with the victims and their parents and France’s support for the government of Pakistan in their fight against terrorism.
“No words can express the ignominy of such an attack against children in their school,” Hollande said in a statement.

Below are some of the early reactions to the attack:

• “I am heartbroken by this senseless and cold blooded act of terror in Peshawar that is unfolding before us. Innocent children in their school have no place in horror such as this. I condemn these atrocious and cowardly acts and stand united with the government and armed forces of Pakistan whose efforts so far to address this horrific event are commendable. I, along with millions of others around the world, mourn these children, my brothers and sisters — but we will never be defeated,” Nobel Peace Prize Winner Malala Yousafzai.
• “The government together with the army has started Zarb-e-Azb and it will continue until the terrorism is rooted out from our land. We also have had discussions with Afghanistan that they and we together fight this terrorism, and this fight will continue. No one should have any doubt about it.” Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif speaking from Peshawar. Zarb-e-Azb is the name of the Pakistani military operation being carried out in North Waziristan.
• “The United States strongly condemns senseless and inhumane attacks on innocent students and educators, and stands in solidarity with the people of Pakistan, and all who fight the menace of terrorism. Few have suffered more at the hands of terrorists and extremists than the people of Pakistan,” US Ambassador to Pakistan Richard Olson said in a statement.
• “The killing of innocent children is contrary to Islam,” Afghanistan’s President Ashraf Ghani said in a statement.
• “I condemn this criminal attack in the sharpest possible terms. The cruel cowardice of taking children hostage and murdering them surpasses everything that Pakistan, which has been subjected to terrorism and violence for years, has known to date,” German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said in a statement.
• “There can be absolutely no justification for targeting children in this way. This unconscionable Taleban attack is a grave reminder that civilians in north-west Pakistan desperately need effective protection from militant groups,” David Griffiths, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for Asia-Pacific, said in a statement.