Karachi under hightened security
KARACHI: Authorities have tightened security in Karachi after a previously unknown group claimed responsibility for a series of explosions at Western-owned gasoline stations, police said Monday.
The United Muslim Army, a previously unknown group, claimed responsibility for setting off 21 small explosions at Shell and Caltex gas stations in Karachi last Thursday. “Security has been improved in view of the letter received by newspapers,” said Ghulam Mahmood Dogar, Karachi’s Senior Superintendent of Police, in charge of security in the port city.
Islamic hardliners have been angered by Pakistan’s support for the US-led war against terrorism in neighbouring Afghanistan and its crackdowns on local Islamic militants and al-Qaeda fugitives. More than 500 al-Qaeda suspects have been arrested in Pakistan. Many have been handed over to the US. Over the past 18 months, Karachi has seen several deadly attacks, including the kidnapping and killing of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, an explosion outside the US Consulate that killed 17 people and the bombing of a bus that killed 11 French engineers. —AP