Hangu attacker’s prints not in Nadra database: police

Published October 1, 2023
RESCUE workers search for victims in the debris of the mosque after the blast in Hangu, on Friday. — AFP
RESCUE workers search for victims in the debris of the mosque after the blast in Hangu, on Friday. — AFP

PESHAWAR: The fingerprints of a suicide bomber, who left five people dead when he blew himself up at a mosque in Hangu on Friday, do not match any available in the Nadra database, suggesting that he may be an unknown man or a foreigner.

According to police, “initial probe suggests that the suicide attack on the police station was carried out by Islamic State Khorasan (IS-K).”

Five lives were lost and nine people were injured in the bombing of the mosque, located inside a compound along with the living quarters and police barracks, officials said.

Policemen posted at the Doaba police station and owners of nearby shops usually attended prayers there.

On Friday, two assailants on a motorcycle tried to enter the compound. How­ever, when confronted by policemen at the entrance of the compound, one of the men was shot dead.

According to an initial assessment report, an explosion took place after the man was shot, which was attributed to a grenade. In the smoke and con­­fusion, the other atta­cker managed to enter the mosque and blew himself up.

The report also said that while fingerprint samples were obtained, no match for them could be found in the database.

“It means that the suicide bomber, whose fingerprints were acquired, was an unknown. Further probe will unearth the bomber’s whereabouts,” the initial assessment report read.

A case has been registered with the counterterrorism department in Kohat and an investigation is underway, the assessment report read.

Peshawar Corps Commander Hassan Azhar Hayat, who visited the site, lauded the bravery of the police personnel guarding the compound. KP Police Chief Akhtar Hayat Gandapur said that the damages could have been greater had the suicide bombers not been neutralised.

When told that there was no CCTV footage of the incident due to power loadshedding and the absence of a solar-powered backup, KP Chief Secretary Aslam Chaudhry asked the district administration to share details so that a solar backup could be provided.

Published in Dawn, October 1st, 2023

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