New Delhi: As the world reacted with anger and horror to the killing of more than a 100 Pakistani children, Nobel laureate Kailash Satyarthi said, on NDTV, "I beg the Taliban, take me and leave these children." (Peshawar school attack: Track LIVE updates)
"It's the most shocking incident, in my knowledge, in my life. These children are my children" said Mr Satyarthi, who received the Noble Peace Prize last week in Oslo with his co-awardee Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Taliban when she was 15 for fighting for the right to education for young girls. (10 Latest Developments)
Taliban gunmen stormed a military-run school in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar today, killing nearly 130 people, most of them children and teenagers in grades 1-10.
"My son was in uniform in the morning. He is in a casket now," wailed one parent, Tahir Ali, as he came to the hospital to collect the body of his 14-year-old son Abdullah.
The attack began in the morning hours, with about half a dozen gunmen entering the school - and shooting at random, said police officer Javed Khan. Army commandos quickly arrived at the scene and exchanged fire with the gunmen, he said. Students wearing their green school uniforms could be seen on Pakistani television fleeing the area.
Taliban spokesman Mohammed Khurasani claimed responsibility for the attack in a phone call to media, saying that six suicide bombers had carried out the attack in revenge for the killings of Taliban members at the hands of Pakistani authorities.
The Pakistani military launched a widespread military operation in the North Waziristan tribal area in June, vowing that it would go after all militant groups that had been operating in the area.
Tuesday's attack calls into question whether the militants have been crippled by the military or will be able to regroup.