KARACHI: The paramilitary Rangers have identified five of the seven terrorists killed in Sunday’s gunfight as members of a banned sectarian extremist group, including one involved in the 2011 Mehran airbase assault.
The seven terrorists – five of them belonging to the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi sectarian outfit – were killed in a gunfight with the Rangers in the Shah Latif neighbourhood of Karachi on the night between Sunday and Monday. The firefight was triggered by a Rangers raid on the hideout of the terrorists.
A Rangers spokesperson identified the five terrorists as Omar Hayat, alias Qari, Amir Ali Chaudhry, Ahmed Feroz, Shakeel, alias Burmi, and Aqib Yousuf. All of them had been involved in various terrorist attacks.
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Omar Hayat had been involved in several high-profile cases of terrorism, including the deadly attacks on Mehran airbase, Karachi Airport and on mourning processions during Muharram in 2009, according to the spokesperson. He was a close confidante of LeJ chief Asif Chhoto.
Asif Chhoto, who had become LeJ chief following the death of Malik Ishaq and carried a bounty of Rs 3,000,000 on his head, was killed along with his three associates near Lahore on January 18 this year.
Amir Chaudhry, an expert in anti-drone technology, had also been involved in the Karachi Airport attack. The remaining terrorists had been involved in various terrorism acts including attacks on army soldiers.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 21st, 2017.