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Top of the News

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The latest headlines.

BILL WOLFF (Announcer): This is NPR.

RACHEL MARTIN, host:

Hey, thanks guys. Good morning everyone.

As you've just heard, thousands of mourners gathered in southern Pakistan today to meet the body of assassinated opposition leader Benazir Bhutto. Ms. Bhutto's death was followed by an eruption of violence at her supporters took to the streets in many parts of Pakistan, particularly in her native province of Sindh and its capital city Karachi.

NPR's Philip Reeves is there.

PHILIP REEVES: A large crowd, an emotional crowd, many of them carrying the green, red and black flag of the Pakistan Peoples Party - Benazir Bhutto's party - has gathered there having traveled since news of her assassination broke to that spot which is some 300 miles or so away from the city of Karachi. And they gathered at a village in the district of Larkana, which is where the Bhutto family have their ancestral home, at a family graveyard where Benazir Bhutto will be laid to rest next to her father Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, who was hanged by a military ruler General Zia ul-Haq in 1979.

MARTIN: At the conclusion of Friday prayers today, Benazir Bhutto was interred as her family's mausoleum in southern Pakistan beside her father's grave. The death of Bhutto has stressed Pakistani deeper into political crisis, although Pakistani government - officials insist the January 8th elections will go ahead as scheduled at this point.

Stay with us. We'll have a unique perspective on this story from Pakistan coming up next in the show.

Over to Iraq now where a car bomb exploded in the middle of a busy market today killing at least 11 people and wounding dozens. The popular market in Tayaran Square, which has been targeted by insurgents in the past, was full of shoppers heading home from Friday prayers. Violence across Iraq is down nearly 60 percent according to the U.S. military.

Meanwhile, American soldiers have killed 11 members of the Mahdi Army, the militia loyal to Shiite cleric Moqtada al Sadr. It happened during a neighborhood raid in the southern Iraq city of Kut early yesterday.

And close to the home, more details emerging about the fatal tiger mauling in San Francisco. Police and family members say the last few minutes of the victim's life were spent trying to save his friend from being mauled to death, only to have the animal turn on him instead. Carlos Sousa Jr. and his friend's brother desperately tried to distract the 300-pound Siberian tiger, but the animal then attacked and killed the 17-year-old Sousa.

Meanwhile, San Francisco zoo officials are now saying that the walls surrounding the tiger is below the minimum safety level - just twelve and a half feet tall. According to the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, that wall should be at least 16.4 feet high. The director of the zoo says the tiger must have jumped the wall. The two survivors of the attack are in the hospital in stable condition.

That's the news. You will always find it online at npr.org.

WOLFF: This is NPR.

MARTIN: Alison and John.

ALISON STEWART, host:

Thanks Rachel.

JOHN FUGELSANG, host:

Thank you.

MARTIN: You're welcome.

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