‘Pakistan mosque bomber wore police uniform as disguise

The man who attacked a mosque in the Pakistani city of Peshawar on Monday used a police uniform to gain access to the area, police have said.

The suicide bomber reportedly entered through the main gates of the secure zone where the mosque is located.

Police chief, Moazzam Jah An­sari, said they had CCTV footage revealing the man’s final move­ments, and were closing in on the “terror network” responsible.

He also confirmed a head found at the site was the attacker’s.

Monday’s blast – one of the deadliest attacks in Pakistan in years – took place at a 50-year-old mosque in a high-security police zone called Police Lines.

At least 100 people were killed, of whom most were police offi­cers.

Officers failed to check the attacker as they assumed he was one of them, Mr Ansari said.

“I admit this was a security lapse. My men could not stop it. This is my fault.”

He explained that police had been able to trace the bomber’s motorcycle journey before the attack using CCTV footage.

As the man parked his mo­torcycle, he was “in a police uniform and was wearing a mask and a helmet”. After entering the compound, the attacker asked a constable where the mosque was.

Mr Ansari – who heads the force in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province – added that ball bearings had been found which were used in a suicide jacket.

He said 10-12kg (22-26lb) of TNT explosives were used in the blast, which caused the mosque’s roof to collapse on the hundreds who were praying in the building.

Police do not believe the man was a “lone wolf”, and have sug­gested there was an entire network behind him.

A claim that the hardline Isla­mist militant group, Tehrik-i-Tal­iban Pakistan (TTP), carried out Monday’s bombing was later denied by the group, which blamed it on the commander of a breakaway faction. -BBC

Show More
Back to top button