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Pakistan arrests suspects over school massacre

December 22, 2014

At least six people have been arrested in connection with the recent unprecedented Taliban attack on a school in Pakistan. The interior minister told the press that his country was at war with anti-government militants.

Reporter besuchen die Schule in Peschawar 17.12.2014
Image: Reuters/F. Aziz

Six people, including one woman, were arrested in a remote town in Pakistan's central Punjab province according to news agency DPA. The arrests were made in connection with last week's Taliban attack which left nearly 150 people dead, most of them children.

"A few suspects who were facilitators in one way or another have been taken into custody," Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan told reporters in the capital, Islamabad.

Investigations and interrogations were "moving ahead in a positive manner," Khan added, while declining to name the suspects. Khan said that Pakistan was at war with the militants, and appealed to all Pakistani citizens to assist the government in cracking down on insurgents.

The attack on an army school in Peshawar was the second-deadliest in the nation's history. At least six Taliban militants entered the school and opened fire, with the Islamist organization later claiming it was in revenge for the family members who have died during the Pakistani army's operation against them in North Waziristan. The army says that it has killed 1,200 insurgents in that operation since mid-June.

In response to the attack, the government bombed Taliban hideouts along the border with Afghanistan, and lifted a moratorium on the death penalty for convicted terrorists.

Over the weekend, six men were executed after being convicted on terrorism charges, all members of local militant groups who had turned against the state.

The insurgent groups have sworn revenge for the hanged men.

es/pfd (AP, dpa)

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