Accessibility links

Breaking News

Pakistan Claims Capture of Two Islamic State Group Would-Be Suicide Bombers

Peshawar Pakistan
Peshawar Pakistan

Paskistani authorities said Friday they had arrested two alleged would-be suicide bombers linked to a regional affiliate of the Islamic State group known as Islamic State-Khorasan, or IS-K.

The provincial counterterrorism department said an "intelligence-based" operation had detained the two men near Peshawar, the capital of northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan.

The statement said the alleged bombers "are members of Daesh Khorasan and graduated from a training facility for suicide bombers" in the eastern Afghan border province of Paktia. "Daesh Khorasan” is a local acronym for IS-K.

The statement also said the raid recovered two suicide vests, several hand grenades, and a pistol, adding that the suspects were planning to target regional Pakistani politicians.

IS-K routinely carries out and claims attacks in Afghanistan and Pakistan, targeting civilians and security forces.

The United States considers IS-K as a significant danger to the security of the region and the entire globe. The U.S. special envoy for Afghanistan renewed those concerns Thursday.

"The terrorist group whose capabilities and intent concern us the most in Afghanistan is the Islamic State branch there, Islamic State Khorasan Province, or ISIS-K," Thomas West told a congressional hearing in Washington, using another acronym for IS-K.

"ISIS-K harbors clear intent to launch external attacks, and we monitor their capabilities and planning vigilantly," West added.

IS-K has particularly intensified its violent campaign in Afghanistan since the Taliban regained control of the conflict-torn country in August 2021. It has targeted minority Afghan Shiite Muslims and the Taliban, killing hundreds of people over the past two years.

The Taliban claim their security forces had significantly weakened IS-K, and that it is no longer a threat in Afghanistan or beyond.