KARACHI: Police on Monday claimed to have killed three suspects, said to be associated with the militant Islamic State group and allegedly involved in killing 35 security personnel in Sindh and Balochistan, on the outskirts of the metropolis.

Malir SSP Irfan Bahadur said that the police and an intelligence agency carried out a joint operation in the early hours of Monday morning in Khuda Bux Brohi Goth near Northern Bypass within the remit of the SITE Superhighway Industrial Area police station.

The suspects opened fire on the raiding team and during an exchange of gunfire, three suspects were killed, he said, adding that their two accomplices managed to escape.

He said that the police found two sub-machine guns, one pistol, four hand-grenades and one “suicide vest” in their custody.

The bodies were shifted to the Abbasi Shaheed Hospital for medico-legal formalities.

Police say the suspects were involved in targeted killing of 35 security personnel

The SSP identified the deceased as Shahid, Usman and Talat.

“They were previously affiliated with Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) and later joined IS led by Umar alias Kathio,” he said.

Umar Kathio is said to be involved in the 2015 Safoora Goth bus carnage case in which dozens of members of the Shia Ismaili community, including women, were killed.

About the killed militants, officials said that they were involved in targeted killings of 35 personnel of the Army, Rangers and police in Sindh and Balochistan provinces.

“Shahid was also involved in the killing of US journalist Daniel Pearl in 2002,” said the Malir SSP. He was a close aide of Naeem Bukhari, the then chief of a faction of the banned Lashkar-i-Jhangvi, and accompanied him in several incidents, he added.

The officer said that suspect Usman was involved in targeted killings of four policemen inside a restaurant in Korangi a few years ago. Besides, he was involved in an attack on an Imambargah in Korangi.

Usman along with his accomplices was also involved in targeted killings of a policeman in Zia Colony, four personnel of Rangers in Orangi Town and two army personnel in Saddar in the recent past.

Suspect Talat’s name was also included in the Red Book, a compilation of militants’ details maintained by the Counter-Terrorism Department, Sindh.

He was the chief of AQIS in Karachi before joining IS and was absconding in several terrorism cases. He originally hailed from Hyderabad.

Published in Dawn, June 25th, 2019