Pakistan militant group leader arrested


People gather after a bomb targeting Shiite Muslims exploded in busy market in Hazara town, an area dominated by Shiites on the outskirts of Quetta, on February 16, 2013. The bomb killed 63 people including women and children and wounded 180 in Pakistan's insurgency-hit southwest, police and officials said.



Pakistani police have arrested Malik Ishaq, leader of banned militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) in connection with attacks on the city of Quetta that have killed nearly 200 people this year.

According to Reuters, police arrested Ishaq at his home in the town of Rahim Yar Khan on Friday afternoon. His Sunni militant group claimed two bombings about a month apart that targeted Quetta's Shiite community and sparked demonstrations across the country and the dismissal of the local government.

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"LeJ has accepted responsibility for the recent Quetta blast and Ishaq is its supreme commander. That's why we have arrested him and 24 other LeJ militants," said district police officer Zafar Chatta.

Police surround Ishaq's home and negotiated with him before he turned himself over to authorities, reported BBC News. Ishaq had been in jail for a decade before being released in 2011.

LeJ was banned in Pakistan in 2001, according to CNN. The group was deemed a terror organization by the United States in 2003.