Skip to comments.Police Seek 6 Pakistanis in Egypt Attack
Posted on 07/25/2005 3:57:35 AM PDT by Wiz
SHARM EL-SHEIK, Egypt - Police investigators said Monday that they were searching for six Pakistani men as the probe into the weekend's terrorist attack at this Red Sea resort widened.
Police were circulating photographs of the six, who have apparently been missing since before the attacks, at checkpoints in and around this southern Sinai resort city. An Associated Press correspondent who saw the images said the men appeared to be between the ages of 20 and 30.
The involvement of Pakistanis in the attack in Sharm el-Sheik would be unprecedented, as non-Egyptians have rarely been linked to attacks here. It would also be extremely difficult for a group of young Pakistanis not to be noticed in Sharm, one of the heaviest policed cities in Egypt and a favorite place of residence for President Hosni Mubarak.
An official at the Pakistan Embassy in Cairo said his embassy was in contact with Egyptian authorities over the issue of the missing Pakistanis.
"But they have not officially informed us that the Pakistanis are suspected of involvement in the bombing. They are only saying: 'We are searching for them. We cannot trace them,"' said Khalid Ahmed, a counselor at the Pakistani mission.
"It is very difficult for us to confirm whether any Pakistani was in Sharm el-Sheik but it is possible that someone may have been there. I have a strong belief that Pakistanis cannot be involved in terrorism here," he said.
Many Pakistanis use Egypt as a route to travel to Europe to find jobs, he said. Last week, police arrested between 40 and 45 Pakistanis in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria for being illegal immigrants.
Police have detained more than 70 people in Sharm and other parts of the Sinai Peninsula during the investigation, which is also following different threads, including possible Palestinian involvement and whether the attacks were linked to last October's bombings in two other Sinai resorts.
The investigators, who spoke only on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the inquiry, said they are looking into whether the six men had any involvement in carrying out Saturday's attack, Egypt's deadliest ever.
Police were to conduct DNA testing on the remains of a suicide bomber found in a car that rammed into the Ghazala Gardens Hotel in Naama Bay, the city's main tourist area, early Saturday. Two other blasts rocked a car park near the hotel and an area about two miles away called the Old Market.
According to local hospitals, Saturday's pre-dawn bombings killed at least 88 people; Egypt's Health Ministry put the death toll at 64. Hospitals said the ministry count does not include a number of sets of body parts. At least one American was killed.
If independently confirmed, any involvement of Pakistanis would suggest that those behind Saturday's bombings belong to a much wider terror network than previously thought.
Until the latest news broke Monday, suspicions had primarily focused on a Sinai-based network thought responsible for bombings in the area last October that also targeted tourist sites.
The involvement of the Pakistanis, if proven, would also increase suspicions that Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida may have been involved in the attacks. The Saudi-born bin Laden is popular among militant Pakistani groups and is known to enjoy support in tribal areas close to the Afghan border.
On Sunday, security officials said the bombers appeared to have entered Sharm in two pickup trucks loaded with explosives hidden under vegetables and that police were searching for three suspects believed to have survived the bombings. It was unclear if police were linking those three in any way to the six Pakistanis being sought.
Before the attacks, the militants rubbed serial numbers off the trucks' engines, the officials said. Such serial numbers had been a key clue Egyptian investigators had used to track down those behind similar vehicle bombings last October against two resorts further north in the Sinai Peninsula, Taba and Ras Shitan.
Investigators were also examining whether the suicide bomber who set off the blast at the Ghazala was one of five suspects still at large from the October attacks that killed 34 people.
Police took DNA samples from the parents of the five Taba suspects to compare with bodies found at the Ghazala, a police official said in el-Arish, where the parents were briefly detained.
Egyptian authorities portrayed the Taba bombings as an extension of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, rather than a homegrown Islamic militant movement or an al-Qaida-linked operation. They said a Palestinian who died in the attacks had recruited Bedouins and Egyptians to plot the bombings.
But the sophistication of the Sharm bombings and their timing on the heels of two rounds of explosions in London raised worries of a wider international connection and possible al-Qaida links.
Two rival claims of responsibility have emerged for the Sharm bombings, but neither statement could be authenticated. One was by the Abdullah Azzam Brigades of al-Qaida in Syria and Egypt, which also claimed responsibility for the October bombings. The other was by the previously unknown Holy Warriors of Egypt.
Fits the ( gasp ) profile.
Well, now it seems like the deaf are forced sit up, suffer and listen hard.
It not just the pakistanis, but Pakistan itself that's mentally ill.
Dont forget Pak has nukes, (thanks to stolen tech) and has been an ardent proliferater in the past.
Pak is easily the most dangerous islamic threat to world peace. The US couldeasily change policy and reverse course on Pakistan, allowing the regime to collapse into civil war while quielty move in and take out the nuke capability. A balkanized Pak will be much more manageble than the current state of that nation.
But but but it just cant be!! The Pakis are a "FRONT-RUNNING ALLY" against terrorism!! They have done sooooo much for our GWOT!!!!
It must be those bloody Injuns at it again ......doing propaganda against innocent Paki "allies"!
You favourite country is making headlines again.
Wacky Pakis ping
Pakistanis? Thought it was the Jews.
Hey, the TV had a clip of some grocery product made in India - connected to the London attacks.
Conclusively proves devious, wily Hindus are behind the London attacks, blaming it on the Salafis, taking a page out of the Zionist manipulators handbook.
Go lob some mortars at Pak rebels (yeah, that's effective).
Again, Musharraf is doing about the best he can within an extremely hard situation - You foolishly keep insisting that anyone is denying there are many extremists within Pakistan - NO ONE is saying there isn't!
In fact, we are saying the exact opposite! - Which is exactly WHY Musharraf is in a very complex and difficult situation!
Who wasn't in a difficult situation was INIDA - Who choose to be the wimps you guys are when it came to supporting the Coalition of the Willing in removing Saddam from power and helping in spreading freedom to the rest of the Middle East.
India is hardly better than Musharraf - In that, you are only in support of America for when it benefits YOU!!
Bottom line is though, we don't need you! - You HAVE to have our support -
My, they do look like they're bonding, arent' they?
You still dont get it do you? India didnt support the Iraq war because Iraq was not the most dangerous country in the GWOT. The most dangerous enemy is Pak and without fixing that.. going to Iraq has not helped the GWOT at all. Saddam wasnt half as dangerous as Pak. lets face it. Lets also face the fact that the US policy of Bribing Mush has failed... The terror camps are recruiting as usual. So that proves India was right all along. And when India wanted to take out those camps it was colin powell and US diplomacy that saved them. Now reap the consequences.