Police arrest 3 militant suspects in northwest Pakistan

Police said they arrested three Islamic militant suspects Tuesday, seizing explosives, detonators and other bomb-making materials during a routine check in a remote area of northwestern Pakistan.

Officers stopped a vehicle in which the three Pakistani men were traveling on the outskirts of Dera Ismail Khan, a major town in North West Frontier Province bordering Afghanistan, said Dar Ali Khattak, a local police official.

"These terrorists are now in our custody. They are being questioned, and we suspect that they have links with some militant group," Khattak told The Associated Press, adding that the men came from South Waziristan, a neighboring tribal region where dozens of military operations have taken place against remnants of Taliban, al-Qaida and their local supporters in recent years.

Khattak gave no other details, only saying they were still trying to determine why the suspects were in Dera Ismail Khan. "We have started investigations, and everything will be clear soon," he said.

Dera Ismail Khan is located about 300 kilometers (180 miles) southwest of Pakistan's capital, Islamabad.

Pakistan is a key ally of the United States in its war on terror and has deployed thousands of troops in its tribal areas in an effort to flush out foreign militants and their local supporters, who often attack security forces, reports the AP.


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