Malik denies reports of al Qaeda leaders' arrests

Interi­or Minist­er Rehman Malik says government will welcom­e Taliba­n if they surren­der weapon­s.

Express November 19, 2010

KARACHI: Interior Minister Rehman Malik denied reports regarding the arrest of al Qaeda leaders from Karachi.

While talking to state television, Malik said the government would welcome the Taliban if they surrender their weapons and come forward for the betterment of the country. He advised Taliban leaders to play their role in the development of Pakistan.

He further stated that the government would ban the collection of sacrificial animal skins in Karachi if politics on this issue was not stopped.

The CID recently swooped down on militants in Karachi nabbing suspects who were planning attacks to target Shias ahead of Ashura. The suspects belonged to the militant groups Lashkar-e-Jhangvi and Tehrik-i-Taliban.

Last week, Karachi saw an audacious coordinated gun and car bomb suicide attack on the Crime Investigation Department (CID) building. There were speculations at that time that the attack was in response to the arrests CID had made the day before. However, a senior intelligence official speaking to The Express Tribune had denied the attack had anything to do with the arrests.  The Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan had claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was in retaliation to US air strikes in the country’s northwestern tribal areas.

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