UNTIL now 2007 was considered to be the bloodiest year since Pakistan joined the war against the Al Qaeda, Taliban and other militant groups. During the year, a series of suicide attacks and roadside bombings rocked the country, from the Federally Administered Tribal Areas to Karachi, claiming the lives of more than 1,100 people, including former premier Benazir Bhutto.

However, if the violent trend recorded in the first ten weeks of 2008 is anything to go by, the absence of good intelligence, effective security measures and a collective will to fight the scourge of terrorism may make this the worst year ever. The following is a chronology of suicide attacks which took place over the last 71 days:

— Jan 10, Lahore, policemen outside LHC, 24;

— Jan 17, Peshawar, imambargah, 12;

— Jan 23, Peshawar, checkpoint, one;

— Feb 1, North Waziristan, security personnel, five;

— Feb 4, Rawalpindi, army officers, eight;

— Feb 9, Charsadda, ANP rally, 27;

— Feb 11, North Waziristan, peace jirga, eight;

— Feb 13, Mingora, election candidate, two;

— Feb 16, Mingora, army media centre, two;

— Feb 16, Parachinar, election rally, 47;

— Feb 25, Rawalpindi, army surgeon-general, eight;

— Feb 29, Mingora, DSP’s funeral, 46;

— March 1, Bajaur, Levies vehicle, two;

— March 2, Darra Adamkhel, tribal jirga, 42;

— March 4, Lahore, Navy War College, six;

— March 11, Lahore, FIA headquarters and a private company, 26.

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