JW "Bill" Marriott Jr, chairman and CEO of Marriott International, has condemned the terrorist attack on the family-owned company's hotel in Islamabad, Pakistan.
On Saturday, a large truck pulled up to the security checkpoint of the heavily guarded hotel and exploded. The suicide bomber killed 53 and injured more than 250.
Writing in his blog on the corporate website, Marriott Jr said the tradgedy and loss of life had left him greatly saddened. "My heart goes out to those who've been injured and the families of the victims," he wrote.
The death toll included Marriott security personnel who stopped the truck just outside the fortified gate. The bomb detonated while they were examining it and every member of the security team was killed.
"These guys were defending the lives of hotel guests and their fellow co-workers," continued Marriott. "They were killed in the line of duty."
He also praised the staff who escaped serious injury and who are now assisting with rescue and recovery efforts. "The actions of these associates in Islamabad and their desire and willingness to help in a time of such tremendous tragedy are a true testament to Marriott's culture," said the chairman and CEO.
No one has so far claimed responsibility for the attack.
At your service: JW Marriott Jr interview