Pakistani police raid militant hideout; 4 people killed

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) — Security forces raided a militant hideout in the northwestern town of Hangu, killing three suspects including the mastermind of a bombing last year that killed 35 Shiites at a food market, a police official and the military said Wednesday.

A civilian was also killed in the shootout, they said.

Local police officer Mohammad Khalid said militant commander Mohammad Islam was among the three militants killed in late Tuesday’s raid. He said Islam had orchestrated the Nov. 23 bombing at the market in the town of Klaya in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa province.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack at the time, saying it targeted “Shiite apostates.”

Sunni extremists often targeted Shiites in this Islamic nation. The Islamic State group has carried out several attacks, though authorities say it has no organized presence in Pakistan.

Also on Wednesday, a bomb attached to a motorcycle went off near a shop in the town of Rojhan in eastern Punjab province, killing one resident and wounding another, senior police officer Haroon Khan said.

He said officers were still investigating who had planted the bomb and what was the motive behind the incident.

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Associated Press writer Asim Tanveer contributed to this report from Multan, Pakistan.

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