Biochemical attack: Police probe anthrax parcel sent to PM House

By AFP
Published: February 1, 2012

Police were Wednesday investigating how and why a parcel containing anthrax was sent to the Prime Minister's Secretariat in Islamabad last month.

ISLAMABAD: Just days after the September 11, 2001 attacks, the mailing of anthrax in parcels to government offices rattled a jittery American public. The issue had died down, but now seems to have resurfaced – this time in Pakistan, and the target seems to have been Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani.

Police on Wednesday said that they were investigating a parcel sent to the Prime Minister House last month which contained Anthrax, an infectious disease caused by a type of bacteria called Bacillus.

“The parcel containing anthrax powder was sent last month, about 20 days ago. After the laboratory test confirmed that the parcel contained anthrax, we registered a case against unknown people,” said police officer Hakim Khan.

While the Prime Minister House confirmed the incident, it was not immediately clear who was responsible, or how they could have accessed anthrax, of any quality, in Pakistan. Some reports suggested that a lady professor was responsible and had sent the package from Sindh’s Jamshoro District.

“We have sent a police team to investigate it and to find the culprits there (Jamshoro),” said Khan, an officer at the secretariat police station.

But in Jamshoro, police said they had not been informed by Islamabad of any anthrax delivery, and had, instead, found out through local media reports. “We have not yet received any instructions from the government to investigate this matter,” police official Bashir Ahmed told AFP.

“We have asked the local post office protectively to check their records to know about the sender.“We can’t say how long it will take to complete the investigation. We expect a quick result if the sender’s identity is not fake.”

Published in The Express Tribune, February 2nd, 2012.

Reader Comments (8)

  • BS.Detecter
    Feb 1, 2012 - 4:27PM

    Whoever sent that is an idiot. He/She should have known that Parcel wasn’t be opened by prime minister himself.

    Recommend

  • Chrome
    Feb 1, 2012 - 5:30PM

    @B.SDetecter, if someone is smart enough to obtain anthrax without getting caught and smart enough to package it without getting hurt, that person cannot be stupid.

    It was a dire message for Gilani not to cross certain line.

    Recommend

  • Acorn Guts
    Feb 1, 2012 - 6:40PM

    ” … We expect a quick result if the sender’s identity is not fake … “

    Oh, well done Sherlock!

    Recommend

  • Mohammad Ali Siddiqui
    Feb 1, 2012 - 8:45PM

    It is a new way to scare government officials.

    Post offices and courier companies all across the country must make sure as what are the contents the parcels and packets sent to government officials.

    In future no packet or parcel should be received by the Post Offices and Courier Company’s unless they collect a copy of the CNIC of the person sending such parcels and packets, as well as the photocopy of the CNIC of the person who goes to book the consignment.

    This should not only be done in delivering parcels or packets to VIP’s, but the process should be adopted as a routine matter for every one in the country whosoever use Post Offices or Courier Company’s services.

    Recommend

  • John B
    Feb 2, 2012 - 8:51AM

    It is interesting that anthrax shows up in PAK after all these years. The US case still remains unsolved, by the way.

    Recommend

  • Feb 2, 2012 - 9:52AM

    Good idea ,cant anyone do a QUICK job .
    End our Miseries

    Recommend

  • Feb 2, 2012 - 12:37PM

    Good job……. please send more

    Recommend

  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Feb 2, 2012 - 5:23PM

    It is more dangerous than the atom bonb . It is an attack on PM through Bio- bomb . Take it seriously and find out the culprits at the earliest .

    Recommend

More in Pakistan