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Summary

  1. Peshawar buries its dead after the bloodiest Taliban attack in Pakistan's history
  2. The army says seven attackers were involved, killing 141 people, 132 of them students
  3. Inside the school, BBC journalists find bloodstains and books - the marks of massacre
  4. PM Nawaz Sharif says he will restore security and fight terrorism
  5. The army launches new air strikes on militants in Khyber and North Waziristan areas. All times GMT

Live Reporting

By Yaroslav Lukov, Sally Taft, Alastair Lawson, Neil Arun and Kerry Alexandra

All times stated are UK

  1. Post update

    This brings to an end our live coverage of the aftermath of Tuesday's attack on a school in Peshawar - the bloodiest Taliban terror attack in Pakistan's history. Wednesday has seen mass funerals of the victims in the north-western city, as the nation is observing three days of mourning.

    Thanks for staying with us! You can get all the latest updates on this and other stories on the BBC News website.

  2. Post update

    @MishalHusainBBC

    Mishal Husain

    Presenter

    tweets: 'We want justice' they say, 'we want the Taliban to answer for this' #peshawar

    Vigil in Peshawar
  3. @wburema

    Wietske Burema, BBC producer in Pakistan

    tweets: Tiny coffins covered in rose petals & candles for the dead of Peshawar. Chants of take revenge pak army

    Coffins covered in candles and rose petals
  4. Post update

    Boxer Amir Khan - who comes from a British-Pakistani background - has joined in the international condemnation of the attack. "What has taken place in Peshawar is absolutely horrific and sickening," he said.

    "After recently becoming a father myself I can't really imagine how the families of these innocent children are feeling. "My deepest condolences go out to all the families affected and I wish to express my full support for Pakistan and the people of Pakistan."

  5. Post update

    "We are hoping that we will see strong action from the Afghan side in the coming days," Pakistani army spokesman Maj Gen Asim Saleem Bajwa says, pointing out that the new presidential leadership in Kabul has indicated that it is willing to act.

  6. Post update

    "The time has arrived for Afghanistan and Pakistan to act together against terrorism and extremism with honesty and effectiveness," Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said in a statement after meeting Pakistan's army chief Gen Raheel Sharif and Inter-Services Intelligence agency head Rizwan Akhtar.

  7. Post update

    Thousands of Indians are continuing sending their messages of support to Pakistan in the wake of the school attack with the hashtag #IndiawithPakistan

    The first tweet that started the trend
  8. Post update

    A number of injured people - some of whom remain in critical condition - are still being treated in Peshawar's hospital.

    Health workers treat an injured man in Peshawar's hospital
  9. 'State's survival'

    The massacre by the Taliban should prompt Pakistan's military and political leaders to reconsider their conflicted approach to the insurgency that is threatening the state's survival, a comment column in the New York Times says.

  10. @ShahzebJillani

    Shahzeb Jillani

    BBC News, Pakistan

    tweets: Despite criticism by rights groups, most Pakistanis seem to favour the death penalty for terror suspects.

  11. 'Collective failure'

    Pakistan's National Security Adviser Sartaj Aziz says the attack cannot be blamed on the security services. "In a way, it's a national collective failure," he tells the BBC. "The point is that the attacks against schools were generally against school buildings, not children."

    "They would normally be carried out at night at times when schools are closed. Whereas in this case they actually targeted children and they chose an army public school because they were retaliating, a blow-back against the army operation [in] North Waziristan."

  12. Post update

    @Shaimaakhalil

    Shaimaa Khalil

    BBC Pakistan Correspondent

    tweets: Candle light vigil outside #ArmyPublicSchool in #Peshawar-there's still a great sense of shock here but also anger

    Candlelight vigil in Peshawar
  13. Post update

    While schools are closed in parts of Pakistan, a number of educational institutions have remained open, Dawn reports, to offer prayers for the victims of the massacre. Government buildings and Pakistani missions around the world world have lowered their flags to half-mast during the three days of mourning.

    A Pakistani flag flies at half-mast at the country's embassy in Delhi, India
    Image caption: A Pakistani flag flies at half-mast at the country's embassy in Delhi, India
  14. Post update

    Pakistan's powerful army chief Gen Raheel Sharif visited Afghanistan for talks on how to tackle militants, a day after the Peshawar attack. "Vital elements of intelligence were shared with the concerned authorities, with regard to [the] Peshawar incident," an army statement said, according to the Express Tribune newspaper.

    Afghanistan and Pakistan have accused each other of providing shelter for Taliban fighters on their respective territories.

  15. @wburema

    Wietske Burema, BBC producer in Pakistan

    tweets: Hearing tales of moving heroism. 12 yr old boy helped classmates to scramble over a high school wall and led them across fields to safety.

  16. @TheHaroonRashid

    Haroon Rashid, BBC Urdu

    tweets: Islamabad vigil as all roads to Kohsar market blocked #Peshawar

    Vigil in Islamabad
  17. Anna Myers

    @annamyers

    tweets: Sadness in my heart "@dmosbergen: "The smaller the coffin, the heavier it is to carry." #PeshawarAttack "

  18. Post update

    The belongings of those injured in the attack are scattered across the school.

    Bloodstained shoe in Peshawar school
  19. Post update

    Mr Rashid added that while it was true that Islamabad's approach to tackling terrorism had historically been "selective", the latest offensive in Waziristan would yield results.

  20. Post update

    A Pakistani expert on the Taliban has told the BBC's World at One programme that the school attack was a sign that the army offensive in Waziristan has been successful, leaving the group "annoyed and antagonised".

    Ahmed Rashid said the attack aimed to demoralise the Pakistani army, and could also be read as a message to the campaigner for girls' education, Malala Yousafzai. Mr Rashid said the Pakistani Taliban "wanted to show that their opposition to what [Yousafzai] stands for is still very much there".

  21. Question of numbers

    There is some uncertainty over the exact number of people killed in Peshawar. News agencies - including Reuters, AFP and AP - say the total was 148. But others, including the BBC, are sticking with the number given earlier by the military - 141. The discrepancy may be down to the inclusion of the seven dead attackers in the total.

    This leads us to another discrepancy. While the Pakistani army says it killed seven attackers, the Taliban says six members took part in the assault. However, the image of the attackers released by the militants does show seven people.

  22. Post update

    @SAfridiOfficial

    Shahid Afridi

    Pakistan cricketer

    tweets: Can't get out of today's tragic trauma pls u all pray for all those affected families. We are one Nation, Allah swt is with us.

  23. Bilal Ahmed Khan in Islamabad, Pakistan

    emails: I work at the headquarters of the country's largest telecom company. We just had a short combined prayer for the victims of the Peshawar attack in our courtyard in which about 200 people took part. Many women were crying and the mood was sombre. It has been a quiet and depressed day at the office and the desolate expressions on everyone's face tell the story. Some vigils are being planned in part of the city and I'm planning to visit them.

  24. Post update

    Inside the army-run school, bullet holes surround a display celebrating Pakistan's army.

    Bullet-scarred wall inside school
  25. 'A turning point'

    Veteran Pakistani journalist Rahimullah Yusufzai discussed Pakistan's reaction to the attack with the BBC earlier.

    "I think nobody now talks about having any negotiations with Taliban, the only comment I have is that the Pakistani state should go after them," he said.

    "There should be no discrimination and I heard women saying that these people should be given exemplary punishment. So I think the mood has changed. It's a turning point now in Pakistan."

  26. Post update

    @StewartWood

    Stewart Wood

    Labour Peer

    tweets: Very powerful remarks by [UK Prime Minister David Cameron] on the "massacre of the innocents" in Peshawar at the start of #PMQs.

  27. 'No good or bad Taliban' - Sharif

    More from that news conference with Prime Minister Sharif. "There is no precedent for this attack in the history of Pakistan," he told reporters.

    "The fight against terrorism and extremism is our own fight. There is no good or bad Taliban."

    Pakistan's leaders have been accused of using some elements of the Taliban to serve their regional aims - a charge they have denied.

  28. BreakingSharif holds news conference

    Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has promised to improve security and tackle terrorism. He was speaking to reporters in Peshawar.

    Meanwhile, the number of people killed in Pakistan's bloodiest Taliban attack has now risen to 148.

  29. Late for school - and lucky to be alive

    Dawood Ibrahim would have been at school yesterday - if he had managed to wake up on time, reports the Express Tribune newspaper. But the 15-year-old missed his alarm. Today, he is the sole survivor from his ninth-grade class.

    "Dawood isn't talking to anyone, he isn't talking at all," his brother, Sufyan Ibrahim, told the newspaper. "He just attended funerals the entire day."

  30. Post update

    More images from inside the school, a day after the attack. Here, Pakistani soldiers escort journalists on the premises.

    Inside the school
  31. Rahim Khan, Peshawar

    Rahim shared his photo with his nephew, whom he said had been rescued by his teachers from the school on Tuesday.

    Rahim Khan and his nephew
  32. Death toll rises

    The number of people killed in the Peshawar attack has gone up to 144, according to Pakistani newspaper Express Tribune.

  33. Post update

    The Pakistani Taliban have also released a photograph that they say shows the fighters who stormed the school on Tuesday.

    Taliban photograph of the fighters who stormed a military-run school in Peshawar, Pakistan - 17 December 2014
  34. No remorse

    Haroon Rashid

    BBC News, Pakistan

    The new Taliban statement also says the security agencies had detained militants' relatives and killed them in staged encounters. It says 600 people have been killed in this way this year - a claim that could not be independently verified.

    Taliban spokesman Mohammad Khurasani said the school was targeted because it was where children of army men were studying. He also warned civilians to avoid any links with security agencies. The statement showed no remorse for the deaths of young children.

  35. New Taliban statement

    Haroon Rashid

    BBC News, Pakistan

    Mohammad Khurasani, the spokesman for the banned Pakistani Taliban, says six of its fighters attacked the army-run school in Peshawar. In an emailed message, he says the operation was led by Umer Mansoor, a Taliban military chief in the Dara Adam Khel region.

    The statement says Umer Mansoor remained in touch with the assailants throughout the attack. It says the Pakistan military has been waging a war for the last six years against the people of the tribal regions and Malakand division.

  36. 'They finished what I had lived for'

    Across Peshawar, parents have been burying their children. Akhtar Hussain wept as he buried his 14-year-old son, Fahad.

    "They finished in minutes what I had lived my whole life for, my son,'' the Associated Press news agency quotes him as saying. "That innocent one is now gone in the grave, and I can't wait to join him, I can't live anymore."

    According to the agency, Mr Hussain had worked for years in Dubai so that he could support his children.

    Pakistani school children in Hyderabad pray for those killed in the school attack in Peshawar - 17 December 2014
  37. Charred walls and bullet-holes

    The school was badly damaged in the militant assault and subsequent siege by the security forces. Here is a short video clip of the BBC's Mishal Husain, on a tour of the building with a Pakistani army officer.

  38. Post update

    @bouckap

    Peter Bouckaert

    Director at Human Rights Watch

    tweets: Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif just lifted death penalty moratorium following Taliban Peshawar school attack, populist move but not a solution.

  39. School's happier days

    Asad Liaqat, a doctoral student at Harvard University, writes for Pakistani newspaper Dawn, about his alma mater - the Army Public School in Peshawar. The article contains several pictures of the school in happier times.

    "There would be about 10-15 people, and my Islamiat [religious studies] teacher was usually one of them," he writes.

    "His head was always tilted slightly to the left. For him, probably a marker of added involvement and concentration in the prayer... I wonder if he still taught at the school. I wonder if he still tilted his head to the left when he prayed. I wonder if the tilt saved his life today. I wonder if the lack of a tilt cost the others on the prayer mats their lives."

    A Pakistani soldier walks amidst the debris at the army-run school in Peshawar - 17 December 2014
  40. Going after the Taliban

    The Taliban says yesterday's attack was in retaliation for a Pakistani military offensive on its strongholds near the Afghan border. The BBC's M Ilyas Khan has examined the background to the school massacre.

    "Earlier this month the Pakistani army chief undertook a week-long visit to the US, and the US Congress extended a facility to fund Pakistani military operations against militants by a year," he writes.

    "This came apparently after assurances that Pakistan would give up a policy - which it has long denied - of protecting some militant groups considered essential for its own strategic aims in the region."

  41. Prayers in India

    In Pakistan's neighbour, India, schools have organised tributes for the victims of the Peshawar attack. Here, children in Mumbai observe a few minutes of silence.

    Terrorism is a problem for both countries. Mumbai was targeted in 2008 by militants, alleged by India to have been trained in Pakistan. Pakistan denied the claim, and the attack strained relations between the neighbours.

    Indian schoolchildren pray for Peshawar victims
  42. Post update

    @Shaimaakhalil

    Shaimaa Khalil

    BBC Pakistan Correspondent

    tweets: Body of 14 yr old Abdullah carried to local grave yard. People shouting 'shaheed'-martyr and reciting Quran #peshawar

    Coffin being carried through the streets
  43. 'With what tongue do we speak of the dead?'

    The Pakistani writer Fatima Bhutto has written about yesterday's attack.

    "There is no word for a parent who buries a child," she says. "No equivalent of widow or orphan in any language that I know, we do not have the language to describe a parent who lays his child into the earth before his time. So with what tongue do we speak of the dead now? It is a sorrow too large to bear."

    Ms Bhutto comes from a prominent Pakistani political family. She lost her aunt, Benazir Bhutto, to a bomb attack that was also blamed on the Taliban.

  44. Post update

    More images from inside the school in Peshawar. Here is the auditorium again, where many of the children were shot.

    Auditorium where attack took place
  45. Pakistan army chief in Kabul

    Pakistani army chief Raheel Sharif has arrived in Kabul for talks with Afghan leaders. There are suspicions that the Peshawar attack was masterminded by a Taliban leader based in Afghanistan.

    The Taliban is an international organisation - with allied Pakistani and Afghan offshoots. Tackling the group will require collaboration between the governments of both countries - but their relationship has often been strained.

  46. Malala's view

    Pakistani Nobel Peace laureate Malala Yousafzai has been talking to the BBC about the Peshawar attack. The schoolgirl survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban, who targeted her because she campaigned for the right to an education.

    "Taliban doesn't know anything like condemnation," she says. "The more you condemn them the worse they are, the more violent they are."

    She called on Pakistan's politicians to show unity and resolve in dealing with the militant group.

  47. Pakistan lifts death penalty ban

    Amid calls for those who planned the attack to be brought to justice, Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has lifted a moratorium on the death penalty in cases of terrorism.

    Mr Sharif is also chairing a meeting of the main political parties in Peshawar to discuss a response to the attack. There has been condemnation of the violence from across the political spectrum in Pakistan - prompting hope that this may be a turning point in the country's relationship with the Taliban. The Pakistani army has long denied nurturing militant groups for strategic aims.

  48. Post update

    Mishal Husain was the first journalist to be allowed into the school grounds. You can listen here to her description of what she found inside - an eerie scene of bloodstains and upturned chairs in what should be a lively place.

  49. Post update

    @MishalHusainBBC

    Mishal Husain

    Presenter

    The BBC's Mishal Husain has been tweeting from inside the school. She was granted access by the Pakistani army, which has just finished checking the site for explosives. In the auditorium where around 100 children were killed, she sees shoes and schoolbooks covered in blood.

    Inside the auditorium
  50. Post update

    Welcome to our rolling coverage of the aftermath of the bloodiest Taliban attack in Pakistan's history.

    Seven militants attacked an army-run school in Peshawar, killing at least 132 children and nine staff. The nation is in mourning.