ISLAMABAD: The Iranian embassy in Islamabad has “categorically” rejected statements by Pakistani investigators that suspects in last week’s bombing in the port city of Karachi had been trained in Iran or received instructions from Iran-based commanders.
The statement from the embassy came hours after counterterrorism authorities in Pakistan said a suspect in a May 12 bombing in the Saddar neighborhood of Karachi had been guided by Asghar Shah, an Iran-based commander of the the little-known Sindhudesh Revolutionary Army (SRA), a dissident faction fighting for independence in the province of Sindh. The group had claimed responsibility for the Karachi blast.
“Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Pakistan categorically reject and deny such allegations,” the embassy said in a statement. “The allegations were made in public and in the media without providing any evidence, proof or documents to the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran through official means and this is completely unprofessional and unacceptable.”
“Undoubtedly, a third party seeks to destroy the brotherly and friendly relations between Iran and Pakistan,” the statement added. “Officials and those involved in the media are advised not to fall into the trap of enemies of close relations between Iran and Pakistan.”
In a press release on Thursday, the Counterterrorism Department for Sindh said special investigation teams formed by the CTD in the wake of a latest spate of attacks in Karachi were able to identify a number of suspects through intelligence sources and the use of technology.
Based on the information, police on Wednesday traced three suspects in the Saddar attack as they traveled by motorcycle to transport explosives in Karachi on the instructions of what the CTD said was an Iran-based SRA commander. In a gun battle with the three suspects, two identified as Allah Dino and Nawab Ali were killed while a third suspect fled the scene.
“The accused [Allah Dino] had been taking instructions from Asghar Shah, who operates his group [of the SRA] from Iran,” Syed Khurram Ali Shah, a senior CTD official, told reporters on Thursday.
“The eliminated terrorist Allah Dino was a master of bomb-making and he got his military training from neighboring country Iran,” the CTD press release said.
Iran and Pakistan regularly accuse each other of harboring militants that launch attacks on the neighboring country. Both nations deny state complicity in such attacks.