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 Friday, 20 December, 2002, 16:53 GMT
DNA tests on Pakistan 'militant'
Police search through the rubble after the explosion
Officials examine the wreckage after the blast
The Pakistani authorities are to carry out DNA testing on body parts found after a blast in Karachi to establish whether they are those of a leading militant.

We have found an identity card bearing a picture which resembles Asif Ramzi

Deputy Inspector General, Fayyaz Leghari
Police say they are trying to track down relatives of Asif Ramzi, suspected in involvement in the murder of US reporter Daniel Pearl and a string of bomb attacks in Karachi, in order to compare their DNA.

A senior police official said on Thursday they suspected Asif Ramzi, believed to be the Commander in Chief of the banned group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, died in a blast in the Korangi district of Karachi.

A woman is also believed to be among those left dead by the explosion in a chemical warehouse in the eastern part of the city.

Photograph

In the debris, police found a wallet and an identity card.

Police officials said the photograph on the identity card is that of Asif Ramzi.

Daniel Peal in shackles before his death
Ramzi: Wanted in connection with Daniel Pearl's death
Deputy Inspector General of Police Fayyaz Leghari said on Thursday: "We have found an identity card bearing a picture which resembles Asif Ramzi."

Mr Leghari said they also found a motorcycle with its fuel tank packed with five kilograms (11 lbs) of explosives.

Unknown

Police also said it was possible the people inside the building were attempting to make explosives when it went off.

The identities of the other three victims of the explosion are still unknown.

Daniel Pearl was kidnapped in January and his body was discovered two months later.

Several men have been arrested in connection with Pearl's killing and one man, British-born, Omar Saeed Sheikh, has been sentenced to death.

Lahore arrests

Meanwhile, in Lahore, four of the nine members of a family, who had been taken into custody early on Thursday morning for suspected al-Qaeda links, have been released.

There was strong reaction by Doctors' organisations against the arrests - five of whom were medical men - with groups protesting and shouting anti-American slogans.

The leader of the Pakistan Medical Association - Dr Yasmin Rashed - condemned the actions as "highhanded" and said it raised serious questions about Pakistan's sovereignty.

Earlier this week, Karachi police arrested several men in connection with an alleged plot to blow up US diplomats.

They found 250 bags of ammonium nitrate, a fertiliser used to make explosives.


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