Pakistan school attack: Events held in Birmingham

Image caption About 80 to 100 people gathered in the city centre from 19:00 GMT

Two events have been held in Birmingham to remember the 141 people, mostly children, killed in a Taliban attack at a school in Pakistan.

A prayer service was held at Birmingham Central Mosque and about 80 to 100 people gathered in the city centre for a candlelight vigil.

Shah Jehan from Wolverhampton, said it was "the darkest moment in my life" when he learnt his cousins were dead.

Vigil organiser Zakir Gul told the crowd that the attack was "barbaric".

The Pakistani Taliban (TTP) have admitted carrying out the shootings against the Army Public School to avenge army-led operations against them in the Khyber and North Waziristan areas.

Image caption Shabaz Suheil said he wanted more accountabiilty in Pakistan

'Voice our anger'

Mr Jehan, also a former pupil of the school, told BBC News he could not sleep last night after hearing the news about 10-year-old Saif and nine-year-old Noor.

"You send your children to school to become something, to gain knowledge and to be something in the future, you don't send them to be sent back home in a shroud," he said.

Mr Gul, who is studying at Oxford University, said he and other students decided to get together to organise the vigil to show solidarity against the Taliban and because Birmingham had such a large Asian community.

"We want to show we are against the the barbarism... to voice our anger at the Taliban, the government and the corruption.

"It's disgusting to disregard what's happened.. this affects all of us.

"It's amazing that Pakistan and non-Pakistan people can show solidarity like this against the Taliban."

Image caption Shah Jehan said he had not slept since hearing the news about his two cousins

Shabaz Suheil, 20, who is from Lahore in Pakistan but studying at Aston University, said he wanted to see more accountability in his native country.

"It's good to show solidarity and that we care about them but in reality there are bigger problems to be sorted.

"We want accountability with the authorities - it was an Army school, it was the Army's responsibility to take care of them."

Related Topics