LAHORE, March 12: While Lahore police appear to be clueless about Tuesday's devastating suicide attacks on Federal Investigation Agency's headquarters on Temple Road and the office of an advertising agency in Model Town, reports about presence of about half-a-dozen would-be suicide bombers in the city sent shivers down their spine on Wednesday.
After receiving the report, what police could do immediately was to barricade a portion of a road facing the office of the Inspector-General of Police in the Old Anarkali area.
Other government buildings in the city are doing the same. According to a senior police officer, the Lahore police had beefed up security and were looking for the suspected terrorists in Lahore and elsewhere.
Meanwhile, police and the Federal Investigation Agency's Special Investigation Group collected evidence from the sites of Tuesday's suicide attacks.
"We have still found no clue to Tuesday's devastating suicide bombings and no arrests have been made," DIG Tussadaq Husain told Dawn.
He said he hoped that investigation teams would soon get a lead. Suspected terrorists, who had been detained in connection with a suicide bombing at the Navy War College on March 4, were being interrogated also about Tuesday's blasts.
Police have so far collected the chassis numbers of the two vehicles used in the bombings and limbs of the bombers had been sent for DNA tests.
Two investigation teams have been working on different lines. One of them is trying to determine if the two mini-trucks had been parked near the targets. The other team is trying to find out whether two or four suicide bombers had carried out the attacks.
Meanwhile, a source said that law-enforcement agencies had arrested four suspects in Faisalabad in connection with the Lahore terrorist attack on the FIA building.
He said the owner of one of the pick-ups used in the bombings was among the arrested.
The man, identified as Imtiaz Ahmed, was taken into custody from the Samundri Road where he had his transport business.
Earlier, funeral prayers for 15 FIA officials were held the Police Lines.
Governor Khalid Maqbool, Caretaker Chief Minister Ijaz Nisar, FIA Director-General Tariq Pervaiz, IGP Azhar Nadeem and CCPO Malik Iqbal attended the prayers.
The government has announced Rs500,000 compensation for each of the FIA victims and jobs for their kin.
Dual suicide bombings in Lahore kill 28
Taliban suicide bombers have struck again in the Pakistan city of Lahore. Near-simultaneous suicide car bomb attacks hit two buildings in Lahore, killing at least 28 and wounding over 160 Pakistanis. One of the suicide car bombers struck an office building housing Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency headquarters and a US counterterrorism team.
Pakistani officials received warnings the offices of the Federal Investigation Agency would be attacked, “but we were not expecting it in Lahore,” Federal Investigation Agency chief Tariq Pervaz told Geo News. “The agency mainly deals with immigration and people smuggling but the building also housed the offices of a special US-trained unit created to counter terrorism,” Geo News reported. Twenty-two Pakistanis were killed in the blast; no US deaths have been reported in the blast that tore the front of the eight-story office building.
The second bombing occurred outside an advertising firm, but the motive for this attack is unclear. At least six Pakistanis were killed and scores wounded in the bombing.
Footage from one of the CCTV cameras at the Lahore's Federal Investigation Agency building seems to have captured the suicide bomber in action on Tuesday.
Caught on tape is a truck that drove through the gates of the building knocking over a man standing there.
The first suicide bomber allegedly drove into the building carrying 55 kilos of explosives and ploughed down one of the guards at the gate.
After Tuesday's blasts, security plans and intelligence-gathering operations are being accelerated across Pakistan, according to the outgoing interior minister.
''We are going through a very crucial phase of transition and we are transiting towards a full fledged democratic rule. And, of course, I think perhaps one answer could be that the terrorists are trying to put maximum pressure on to the government that's in the making,'' said Javed Iqbal Cheema, Interior Minister, Pakistan.
Mar 15, 2008
Al-Qaeda steps up its battle in Pakistan
By Syed Saleem Shahzad
PESHAWAR, North-West Frontier Province - Al-Qaeda masterminded the deadly suicide attacks in Lahore this week at the offices of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), Asia Times Online has learned. The attacks are part of al-Qaeda's broader plan to undermine recent Pakistan-United States joint efforts to eradicate al-Qaeda's growing influence in Pakistan society.
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxParadigm Intel suggest the target of the al Qaeda suicide bombing attack at FIA in Lashore might have been one of these guys.