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Suspect in Oct 18 bombing arrested

February 27, 2008


ISLAMABAD, Feb 26: A suspected Al Qaeda militant has been arrested in connection with the October 18 suicide bombing in Karachi that narrowly missed former prime minister Benazir Bhutto but killed about 150 others, a top official said on Wednesday.

Ms Bhutto was assassinated in a gun-and-bomb attack in Rawalpindi on Dec 27, 2007.

Qari Saifullah Akhtar, who has been in custody before, was arrested on Monday in Lahore for his alleged involvement in the bombing that hit Ms Bhutto’s homecoming procession when she returned from exile, Interior Minister Hamid Nawaz said.

“He is involved in the blasts in Karsaz. Therefore he has been arrested,” Mr Nawaz told The Associated Press, referring to the area in Karachi where the bombing happened.

He said authorities had also arrested three other men, identified by Qari Akhtar as his sons.

The minister did not provide details on the nature of Qari Akhtar’s involvement in the bombing.—AP