x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Four arrested over Marriott blast

Police in Pakistan make arrests over last month's suicide attack on the hotel in Islamabad that killed 54.

ISLAMABAD, PAKISTAN // Four men have been arrested over last month's suicide attack on the Marriott hotel in the Pakistani capital, police said today. The four were suspected of "indirect involvement" in the massive blast at the hotel in Islamabad, the city's police chief, Ahmad Latif, said. They are the first known arrests in relation to the bombing. The September 20 attack killed 54 people and was a bloody reminder of the gathering threat posed by militants in nuclear-armed Pakistan.

Mr Latif said the men were arrested in different parts of Punjab province, but gave no more details. The men were brought before an antiterrorism court today where a judge gave police permission to question them for one week. Militants in Pakistan have launched more than 90 suicide attacks on civilian, military and Western targets since July last year that have killed nearly 1,200 people, according to military statistics.

Authorities have said they suspect terrorists based in the tribal regions close to Pakistan's border with Afghanistan of carrying out the Marriott blast. *AP