Pakistan Army HQ attack planned in South Waziristan | world | Hindustan Times
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Pakistan Army HQ attack planned in South Waziristan

The Pakistan Army said on Monday the deadly suicide bomb attack and the subsequent hostage drama at its headquarters in Rawalpindi were planned by the militants in South Waziristan.

world Updated: Oct 12, 2009 22:38 IST

The Pakistan Army said on Monday the deadly suicide bomb attack and the subsequent hostage drama at its headquarters in Rawalpindi were planned by the militants in South Waziristan.

Major General Athar Abbas, director general of the Inter Services Public Relation (ISPR), made the remarks at a press conference here.

Nineteen people were killed in the two-day attack that started on Saturday.

Abbas said the militants' main aim was to press the government to free at least 100 high-profile terrorists from Pakistani jails.

The mastermind of the attack, Aqeel alias Dr Usman, was arrested in an injured state, the Online news agency reported citing the official.

The army had intercepted a conversation between Taliban leader Waliur Rehman and one of the attackers in which his associate asked Rehman to pray for the "fidayeen" attack, he added.

"It clearly reveals the attack was planned in South Waziristan," Abbas said, adding five of the attackers belonged to that region.

Ten terrorists in army uniforms and with sophisticated guns and grenades tried to enter the fortified building in a private vehicle, which had military number plates. The militants wanted to blow themselves up to cause maximum damage.

Abbas said the Pakistan Army chief was present in the building at the time of the attack. The militants' aim was to take senior officials hostage.

The counter-operation was delayed due to tactical reasons, he said.

The militants had taken 42 hostages, of which three were killed.

He said the terrorists network in South Waziristan will be dismantled, but did not give any time frame.