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Karachi Bomb Kills 3 as Minister Apologizes Over Terror Warning

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Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Three people died in a bomb attack in Pakistan’s commercial capital of Karachi that reports said targeted drug gangs.

Two people were wounded in the attack yesterday which the Dawn newspaper said may have followed a clash between narcotics dealers and a group they paid to protect them. The city of 18 million people witnesses spikes in violence involving members of rival political parties, ethnic communities or criminal gangs. More than 2,000 people were killed last year.

The latest bombing came as the country’s Interior Minister faced criticism for comments that Karachi was about to be hit by a series of terrorist attacks early next month.

Rehman Malik was cited by The News newspaper on Jan. 29 as saying he would hold intelligence agencies responsible if the strikes occurred. Malik, a lawmaker for the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party, apologized yesterday after opposition parties and allies accused him of spreading fear.

The minister has called a meeting of top intelligence officials, The News Tribe website said.

-- Editor: Mark Williams

To contact the reporters on this story: Khurrum Anis in Karachi at kkhan14@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Peter Hirschberg at phirschberg@bloomberg.net