Pakistan Interior Minister says terror attack that killed 5 Chinese engineers was masterminded in Afghanistan
This is not the first time that Islamabad has hurled strong accusations at Kabul for supporting terror attacks on their home soil

at 11:15 pm
POK and Kashmir News
Pakistan Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi addressing a press conference

Islamabad, May 26: Marking a worsening of relations, Pakistan’s Interior Minister Mohsin Naqvi has hurled accusations that the March 26 attack that killed five Chinese engineers was planned in Afghanistan and has asked the Taliban government to hand over the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan’s (TTP) terrorists involved in the suicide attack in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa.

Addressing a joint press conference in Lahore, the minister, flanked by officials of the National Counter-Terrorism Authority (Necta), said: “Whether Afghanistan try the terrorists [in the court of law] or not, it should hand over the militants to Pakistan.”

Stating that the attack was fully “planned” from Kabul with facilitators in Pakistan, Naqvi further said: “The TTP leadership planned this attack as a flagship project, and enemy intelligence agencies paid them heavily for the attack.” However, he didn’t give any additional details.

Asking the Afghan interim government to arrest three alleged terrorists named Bakhtiar Shah, Qari Abdullah and Khan Lala, along with TTP chief Noor Wali Mehsud, its Malakand Commander Azmatullah and the entire leadership of the outlawed group, the Interior Minister said: “We want good ties with Afgha­nistan, but for that it is important they arrest these terrorists, prosecute them or hand them to us.”

These remarks came almost two weeks after Inter-Services Public Relations Director General Maj-Gen Ahmed Sharif said the attack was planned in Afghanistan, and the suicide bomber was also an Afghan national.

This is not the first time that Islamabad has hurled strong accusations at Kabul for supporting terror attacks on their home soil, stating that the Taliban has been shielding and even assisting TTP terrorists.

While currently not giving any response, the Taliban government has rubbished such accusations in the past, stating that the Pakistan government is responsible for its own problems. Amid this movement, further strain can be expected in the bilateral ties between the two neighbours with the already tense relations worsening.

On March 26, a vehicle-borne suicide bomber targeted a convoy escorting Chinese engineers in the remote Besham area of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, killing six Chinese engineers, including the vehicle’s driver who was a Pakistani.

The Chinese engineers were en route to their camp in Dasu – the district headquarters of the Upper Kohistan district of K-P – from Islamabad. Their vehicle was hit by an explosive-laden vehicle, coming from the opposite direction, near Lahore Nala on the Karakoram Highway.