Islamabad: Pakistani police on Saturaday seized a
vehicle packed with a tonne of explosives and arrested two
suspected militants, who were planning an attack, from a
troubled area in the country`s northwest, where two suicide
blasts targeting the minority Shia community killed 36 people
The vehicle carrying 1,000 kg of explosives was seized at
Bannu Gate area within the cantonment of Kohat city in
Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, police said.
Deputy Inspector General of Police Masood Afridi said two
suspected militants from the Orakzai tribal region had also
"The militants intended to use the vehicle to carry an
attack in Kohat or Hangu," Afridi told the media.
Both Kohat and Hangu districts have been declared "very
sensitive" for the Islamic holy month of `Muharram` and
security forces had been placed on high alert, he said.
Security forces had launched a search operation and a
bomb disposal squad was called in to defuse the explosives,
A suicide bomber rammed his explosives-laden vehicle into
a hospital run by a Shia community trust in Hangu yesterday,
killing 17 people and injuring 20 more. The Lashkar-e-Jhangvi
al-Almi claimed responsibility for the blast in a telephone
call to the police.
On Wednesday, the first day of Muharram, a suicide bomber
targeted a bus with mostly Shia passengers at a terminal in
Kohat, killing 19 people and injuring over 30.
Authorities have put in place strict security
arrangements across Pakistan for Muharram, which has been
marred by sectarian and militant violence in recent years.