Pak arrests 'mastermind' of 2007 attack on Chinese engineers



Islamabad: Pakistani troops have arrested the suspected mastermind behind the 2007 killing of three Chinese engineers from a Balochistan town bordering Afghanistan, a senior security officer said on Saturday.

Haji Murad Khan Murri, a commander of the banned Baloch Republican Army, was arrested after an exchange of fire when he entered the border town of Chaman late last night, Frontier Corps Commandant Col Shehzad told reporters.

Murri was allegedly behind the attack on the vehicle of Chinese engineers near Hub, a city located 700 kms southeast of Balochistan's capital Quetta, in 2007.

Three Chinese engineers and their driver were killed in the incident while several local residents were injured.

The Chinese nationals were working on the building of a cement factory.

The government had announced a reward of Rs 30 lakh for information on Murri.

Giving details of the arrest, Col Shehzad said border troops intercepted Murri's vehicle while it was entering Pakistani territory from Afghanistan at 11 pm last night.

When the troops signalled the vehicle to stop, gunmen inside it opened fire. The security forces returned fire and arrested Murri while his two accomplices fled towards Afghanistan in the darkness.

Shehzad claimed that troops, who seized the car, found Indian currency and mobile SIMs.

Murri had made calls to India, Kandahar in Afghanistan and Quetta with these SIMs, he claimed.

Murri will be taken to Quetta for interrogation.

Shehzad said he believed the arrest will help authorities in unearthing a terrorist network in Balochistan.

PTI