PESHAWAR, Pakistan – Reaction to the killings of 148 people — almost all of them students — at a military-run school in northwestern Pakistan:
— "We sent our kids to this school because it is known for its high standards and quality of education.... My son was a brilliant student and even a few weeks back he was awarded a gold medal for his excellent midterm results. Yesterday we watched the news on TV and as five of our kids were studying there we got so worried and upset for the safety of our children," said Haji Dost Muhammad, 52, whose son Asad died in the attack. "We were told that a bullet hit him from the back, tearing his heart. Asad was an outstanding student and wanted to be a pilot but his soul flew from his body before he could fly a plane."
— "My son Muhammad Tayyab ... told me that he was not feeling well yesterday and not willing to go to school but I insisted he not miss the class. So on my insistence he went to school," said Muhammad Fawad, who buried his son Wednesday. "Yesterday when I heard the news of the attack on the school I rushed to the spot, tried to reach the school but I couldn't because the operation was in progress. Then students started coming out, dead bodies and injured students ... Despite my poor financial condition, I did everything to give him a quality education. He was my everything and in just one moment I lost everything."
— "During my more than 30 years of doing this job, I have buried countless, maybe hundreds or thousands of bodies here in this vast graveyard, but as I remember I wept only when I was burying my mother several years ago. Yesterday was the first time that while burying those small bodies I couldn't control my tears. I cannot explain it but I wept. I know it was against the rules of our profession but it was the moment to break the rules. I have buried bodies of dead people of different ages, sizes, and weights but you can't imagine that those small bodies I am burying since yesterday felt much heavier than those big ones I had buried previously," said Taj Muhammed, 43, a gravedigger at the largest graveyard in Peshawar.
— "I am determined to go back to the same army public school where terrorists tried to kill me and where the terrorists killed my classmates," said Mohammad Anis, 13, speaking from his hospital bed. "On hearing the gunshots, our teachers quickly shut the door of the auditorium in an effort to stop the terrorists from entering there. But the attackers broke the door and sneaked into the auditorium. Once inside the hall, they tried to kill all the children. Students were falling down and bleeding and one bullet also hit me in my arm."
— "Now is the time for Afghanistan and Pakistan to work together and honestly and effectively fight terrorism and extremism," said Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in a statement released by his office after a meeting with Pakistan's army chief Wednesday. "The attack on the students in Peshawar was an attack on Afghanistan, and an attack on Islam and on humanity."
— "We also want to announce it clearly that there won't be any discrimination of good or bad Taliban at any level," said Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif. "We will continue this war until even a single terrorist is not left on our soil."