Seven arrested for Islamabad blast, CCTV footage provides clues

September 22nd, 2008 - 5:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Islamabad, Sep 22 (IANS) Seven people have been arrested in connection with the terror bombing here that killed 53 including the ambassador of the Czech Republic and two US soldiers. Investigators were working on vital clues from CCTV cameras even as some samples from the blast site were sent to Britain for analysis.”We have laboratories here but certainly we cannot match the Western standards and secondly this is being done to have more than one opinion,” one of the forensic experts at the site said Monday.

A truck laden with powerful explosives exploded in front of the Hotel Marriott Saturday evening, leaving a deep crater in ground and raging fire in the building that went on Sunday.

Another expert, who is assisting a probe committee formed by Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani, said: “A preliminary report has been finalized and would be presented to the government by end of the day today.”

He said there were several CCTV cameras installed in the hotel that have captured the scene of the attack and one of them was at the barrier and it footage clearly showed the face of the attacker who killed himself by a hand grenade.

“We have examined all these videos and may reach some conclusion about the identity of the attacker who was alone,” said the expert not wishing to be identified.

He said they were also trying to identify the vehicles that were passing behind the truck that was loaded with explosives. He said the experts suspect the suicide attacker might have been followed by some handler and he may have passed behind the truck to oversee the operation.

Meanwhile, the body of Czech ambassador Ivo Zdarek was repatriated to his country by a special aircraft. A contingent of Pakistan’s army gave a guard of honour to the slain envoy.

The 47-year-old father of two, Zdarek was named as Czech ambassador to Pakistan in August, and had been living alone at the Marriott Hotel since his arrival here last month.

Search operations for the missing people continued at the Hotel Marriott, but rescue workers said there was no possibility of finding any more body in the gutted structure of the hotel.

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