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Lal Masjid cleric sneaks out in burqa; caught
July 04, 2007 22:12 IST
Pakistan military personnel surrounding the Lal Masjid in Islamabad arrested Maulana Abdul Aziz, one of the two radical clerics of the mosque, when he tried to escape wearing a burqa, Dawnnews TV has reported.
Aziz, along with his younger brother Abdul Rashid Ghazi, was leading the militant students of the madrasas run by the Lal Masjid in their standoff with the government.
Chief Police Commissioner of Islamabad, Tariq Pervez, confirmed Aziz's arrest, saying that he was captured when he came out along with several burqa-clad women.
His identity was established during the screening, he said.
Aziz tried to sneak out in burqa when the troops guarding the area permitted 50-odd parents of students holed up in the mosque to go in to persuade their wards to surrender.
His arrest could perhaps help the government to end the stand-off as he could be effectively used to negotiate the surrender of the rest of the several hundred heavily armed militants headed by his brother Ghazi and holed up in the mosque.