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Home > India > News > PTI

Pakistan police arrest alleged 'handlers' of Bhutto's assassins

February 07, 2008 17:54 IST

The Pakistani police have arrested two people, suspected to be 'handlers' of the attackers who assassinated former prime minister Benazir Bhutto [Images] in the garrison city of Rawalpindi in December 2007.

The two men, identified only as Hasnain and Rafaqat, were arrested by a special investigating team for alleged involvement in the suicide attack on Bhutto at Rawalpindi's Liaquat Bagh on December 27, 2007, Geo News channel reported on Thursday.

They were arrested in Rawalpindi and were being interrogated, the channel reported. The channel quoted sources as claiming that the men accompanied two others - Bilal and Ikram - who allegedly carried out the attack on Bhutto.

Hasnain and Rafaqat were described by the sources as the alleged 'handlers' of the two attackers. The sources also said they had allegedly brought the attackers to Rawalpindi and had accompanied them to the site of the attack.

The channel did not say when the men were arrested.

The news of the arrest broke as Bhutto's Pakistan People's Party marked the end of 40 days of mourning for her through a 'chehlum' ceremony at the Bhutto family mausoleum at Garhi Khuda Baksh in Sindh province.

Addressing a gathering of thousands of people, Bhutto's husband Asif Ali Zardari vowed to complete her mission of ushering in complete democracy to Pakistan. He also pledged to avenge her assassination.

In January, authorities in the northwestern town of Dera Ismail Khan arrested 15-year-old Aitezaz Shah, who claimed he was part of a five-member suicide squad sent by Pakistani Taliban commander Baitullah Mehsud to target Bhutto. Officials are currently trying to corroborate Shah's claims.

President Pervez Musharraf [Images] blamed Mehsud for masterminding Bhutto's assassination, but the militant leader denied the charge through his spokesman.




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