Lahore (AP) — Pakistan said Friday that police arrested several suspects behind this week’s killing of a member of an outlawed anti-India militant group in an attack inside a mosque.
The arrests took place in multiple raids over the past two days, said Usman Anwar, the police chief in eastern Punjab province where a pair of gunmen walked into a mosque in the city of Daska on Wednesday. They opened fire at the worshippers, killing Shahid Latif, a member of an outlawed anti-India militant group and two others before fleeing the scene.
Latif was a close aide to Masood Azhar, the founder of the Jaish-e-Mohammad militant group. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but local police said it appeared that Latif was intentionally targeted.
Anwar said a hostile spy agency of a foreign country was behind the attack and that authorities would soon reveal more details.
Jaish-e-Mohammad has been blamed by neighboring India for multiple past attacks on its soil, including the 2016 attack when seven soldiers were killed at a base in the town of Pathankot in northern India.
Pakistan and India have a long history of bitter relations. Since independence from Britain in 1947, the two South Asian rivals have fought three wars, two of them over Kashmir, the disputed Himalayan region which is divided between India and Pakistan and claimed in its entirety by both.