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'Suspected bomber’s head found'

world Updated: Oct 20, 2007 02:59 IST

Agencies
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Pakistan police said on Friday they have found the severed head of the suspected suicide bomber whose attack killed at least 133 people in Karachi.

“We have found the severed head of a man from the blast site and are certain he is the bomber,” said senior police investigator Raja Omar Khatab. Samples have been taken from the head and sent to a laboratory for DNA and other forensic tests to identify him, Khatab added.

An interior ministry official said the bomb had been packed with metal pellets and nails to cause devastation over a wide area. A grenade was also thrown into the crowd of supporters shortly before the second more powerful blast, police said.

The bombing targeted former Pakistan prime minister Benazir Bhutto during her homecoming parade late on Thursday after eight years in self-imposed exile.

Bhutto escaped unhurt, as the blast ripped through the police escort for the parade in Karachi, whose streets were packed with hundreds of thousands of her supporters.

Police also said that almost all security measures agreed to by the government and the Pakistan People’s Party for the homecoming of former premier Benazir Bhutto were compromised due to the massive turnout of her supporters.

A sea of humanity was waiting outside Jinnah International Airport when a flight from Dubai brought Bhutto back from eight years in exile on Friday and ensured that her motorcade did not leave the airport for almost 90 minutes after she landed.

Karachi police chief Azhar Farooqi, who was “perturbed by the disregard for security”, said among the most obvious violations of the security plan was the breaking of the cordon by PPP supporters. Another violation was Bhutto’s decision not to use the bulletproof screen, specially made by the PPP in consultation with police, he was quoted as saying by the daily Dawn.

Though Benazir was travelling in a truck specially modified for the occasion with the addition of armour plating, a bulletproof screen on its top was removed at the PPP chairperson’s request, the newspaper quoted sources close to the party as saying.