Pakistan identifies Peshawar suicide bomber and network, police say

PESHAWAR, Pakistan – Pakistani police investigators said on Saturday they had identified the suicide bomber and the network behind the D...


PESHAWAR, Pakistan – Pakistani police investigators said on Saturday they had identified the suicide bomber and the network behind the Deadly explosion Friday in a Shiite mosque in Peshawar, in northwestern Pakistan, which left at least 63 dead and nearly 200 injured.

Thirty-seven people remained in hospital, five of them in critical condition, according to Muhammad Asim Khan, spokesman for Peshawar’s largest hospital, Lady Reading.

The regional branch of the Islamic State, Islamic State Khorasan, or ISIS-Kclaimed responsibility for the attack and said it was carried out by an Afghan suicide bomber, whom the militant group identified as Julaibeed al-Kabuli.

Pakistani security officials said the name was a pseudonym and they had identified the attacker and his family. Muhammad Ali Saif, special assistant to the province’s chief minister, told a press conference on Saturday that “the rest of the network will be exposed in the next 48 hours.” He declined to share more details, citing operational sensitivities.

Other security officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the case and ongoing investigations, said the suicide bomber was an Afghan national who emigrated to Pakistan some years ago. decades and lived in the country with his family. Officials said the suicide bomber’s parents informed police of their son’s disappearance and suspected he had joined ISIS.

Investigators say the bomber trained in Afghanistan and appears to have returned recently.

A senior Pakistani police official said police have made significant progress in their investigation, combing through hours of CCTV footage and forensic evidence to identify the network of the attacker.

Friday’s attack adds a new complexity to law enforcement already dealing with the resurgence of the Taliban in Pakistan. Baloch separatists in the southwest of the country have also carried out attacks in recent months.

Security officials say ISIS-K continues to operate from neighboring Afghanistan, but after being targeted by the Afghan Taliban it has dispersed across the country, no longer operating in large numbers groups and holds no physical territory.

Officials monitoring the situation of militants in Afghanistan say nearly 1,600 ISIS-K fighters escaped when the Taliban overran the infamous Pul-e-Charkhi prison on the outskirts of Kabul, the Afghan capital , shortly before taking it in August.

The Taliban have captured or killed nearly half of ISIS-K militants on the run since then, but many remain at large, including Pakistanis, officials say.

Pakistan approached the new Taliban leadership in Kabul for information on the escaped militants, but was told that all existing prison records had been burned shortly before the Taliban took over the prison, according to an official. Pakistani security.

In Peshawar on Saturday, a sheet enveloped the old part of town as funeral prayers were held for several of the dead. Many families of the dead planned to bury their loved ones in Peshawar, while others planned to bury them in their native Kurram tribal district on the border with Afghanistan.

Ismail Khan reported from Peshawar, and Salman Massoud from Islamabad, Pakistan.

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Newsrust - US Top News: Pakistan identifies Peshawar suicide bomber and network, police say
Pakistan identifies Peshawar suicide bomber and network, police say
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