QUETTA: The Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) has claimed to have arrested a “wanted”militant linked with the banned outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al-Alami in a raid conducted in Hazarganji, a locality on the outskirts of the provincial capital.

CTD Deputy Inspector General (DIG) Aitzaz Ahmed Goraya disclosed the information while speaking at a press conference on Wednesday.

He said that the department on a tip-off raided a compound in Killi Shah Muhammad area of Hazarganji and arrested the suspected militant.

“We have taken the militant into custody who was invol­ved in a large number of targeted killings and is a key leader of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi al-Alami,” DIG Goraya said. He was identified as Qari Ismail alias Khalid.

During the initial interrogation, Qari Ismail confessed that he and other members of his group were involved in 15 major targeted killings, including attacks on security forces, police personnel and members of the Hazara community.

The DIG added that a huge quantity of arms and ammunition was also seized from the compound, which the militant used as a hideout.

During the press conference, police showed a confessional statement of Qari Ismail where he listed the names of security personnel killed by the group in the last two years. The suspected militant claimed he joined the banned outfit in 2014 after completing his training in Afghan­istan.

A senior CTD official said Qari Ismail told investigators that some students from Gov­ernment Science Coll­ege in Quetta — who were members of the Muslim Students Organisa­tion — were also involved in facilitating the attacks on security personnel and the Hazara community. He said several others were being trained in Islamabad.

The Balochistan CTD chief said that some group members were killed in security raids but five of them were still operating in Quetta.

DIG Goraya said that a search operation for their arrest was under way.

Published in Dawn, May 10th, 2018

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