Six injured in blast targeting Pakistan anti-terrorist squad (Second Lead)

October 9th, 2008 - 5:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Oct 9 (IANS) Six people were injured as an explosives-laden car blew up near a residential building of the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) at the police headquarters here Thursday, police said. The blast badly damaged the three-storey residential building reserved for the squad but no one was inside at the time of the attack. The block is situated about 300 metres from the main headquarter building.

“Six people present near the building were injured,” said Sub-Inspector Liaqat Ali, who was present at the headquarters at the time of the blast.

He added that the car carrying the explosives was white. No dead body was found in the car or near it, leading police to believe that the explosion was triggered by a remote control.

“The car entered the area after thorough a check up. The driver said he had some gifts for the in-charge of the police headquarters,” another police official said.

“No one posted at the gate suspected that the sweet boxes were filled with explosives. The entry pass was issued to the driver after his ID card was checked,” he added.

He said the driver must have managed to leave the area before the blast as all entry and exit points were sealed soon after the incident.

The explosion was heard more than 10 km away. Residents of the neighbourhood said that they saw smoke coming out of the police headquarters that is located near two main universities and three hospitals.

The blast occurred even as a joint session of the parliament was being briefed by senior military officials on the measures taken to counter terrorism. Due to the high-level meeting, surveillance helicopters had been flying over the capital.

Last month, a suicide bomber drove an explosives-laden truck into Islamabad’s Marriott hotel. At least 55 people, including the Czech ambassador, two US marines and a Danish intelligence officer, were killed in the attack.

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