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Suspected suicide bomber arrested

world Updated: Feb 11, 2008 13:33 IST

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Security agencies in northwestern Pakistan on Monday arrested a suspected suicide bomber as the toll in a suicide attack on an election rally rose to 30 following the death of five injured persons.

An Afghan national named Muhammad Ibrahim Afghani was arrested at Jamrud in the Khyber Agency, political authorities in the lawless tribal area said.

Afghani, who allegedly had a suicide jacket in his possession, was taken to North West Frontier Province capital Peshawar for questioning, officials said.

The toll in yesterday's suicide attack on an election rally of the Awami National Party near Charsadda in the NWFP rose to 30 with the death of five injured persons in hospital.

The blast heightened fears about the security of political leaders on the campaign trail in the final days of electioneering before the February 18 general election.

Over 30 people were injured in the attack, and doctors at a hospital in Peshawar said 11 of them were in a critical condition.

Police officials dismissed the ANP's claim that the attack was not a suicide bombing, saying the bomb disposal squad had found a fuse used in suicide jackets at the venue of the election rally at Nakai village.

Earlier, police officials also said they had sent a severed head found at the site for DNA tests.