Pakistan mourns eighth anniversary of APS massacre
December 16, marks a heart wrenching date with the history of 2016 when above 140 innocent lives had been brutally taken by the terrorists in Army Public School (APS) attack in Peshawar.
The attack left the whole world in shock and the government of Pakistan announced a three-day mourning period following the attack.
At the time of the incident, APS held more than 1,000 staff members and students; many of the pupils were children of military personnel.
The terrorists began their attack in mid-morning when they accessed the large compound by scaling a wall.
According to some reports, they bombed their own vehicle to create a distraction for school guards.
Entering the main assembly hall, where a large group of students was taking a lesson in first aid, they proceeded to shoot indiscriminately.
The attackers, who were armed with grenades and automatic rifles, then went to the classrooms, where they concentrated their fire on teachers and older children.
Commandos from the Special Services Group of the Pakistani army arrived at some point and at length succeeded in cornering the attackers, all of whom were wearing suicide vests.
The attackers died in the confrontation, while the attack was estimated to have lasted about eight hours.
The responsibility for the massacre was claimed by Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), as they justified the massacre as retribution for violent government attacks on its members.
The suspension on capital punishment were lifted in the aftermath of the attacks and military courts were formed according to 21st Amendment in the Constitution under which the terrorists were awarded death sentences.
Seven terrorists had been awarded death sentences, whereas 1 terrorist was given life imprisonment by the military courts.