Pak on high alert ahead of Muharram
Islamabad/Karachi: Pakistan on Saturday put security forces across the country on "red alert" due to fears of terrorist attacks by the Taliban in Karachi, Lahore, Quetta and Peshawar during the Islamic holy month of Muharram.
The alert was issued on the directive of Interior Minister Rehman Malik.
Security forces had been put on red alert in the port city of Karachi, Punjab capital Lahore, Islamabad, the garrison city of Rawalpindi and Peshawar, the capital of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.
Police officials said security had been stepped up across the country.
The four provincial governments had directed law enforcement agencies to remain alert to avert possible terror attacks during Muharram.
Official notifications issued by authorities in the four provinces said militants associated with the Taliban had made plans to carry out terrorist attacks in Karachi, Lahore, Quetta and Peshawar.
Since Muharram began on Wednesday, two suicide attacks targeting the minority Shia community have killed 36 people in northwest Pakistan.