Suspect in Shahzad murder held in Pakistani Kashmir

Police also said that four men involved in the assassination of Federal Minorities Minister Shahbaz Bhatti had been identified but they might have fled the country, Urdu language daily Jang reported.

Interacting with members of the Crime and Court Reporters Association Monday, newly-appointed Inspector General of Police of Islamabad Binyamin said that Ishtiaq Shah, who was allegedly involved in the murder of the journalist, was arrested from Muzaffarabad. He was being questioned.

He said Shah had been involved in attacks on Shahzad even earlier and it seemed that there was an element of personal enmity in the case. However, investigations were on, he said. Shahzad, 40, was kidnapped from Islamabad May 29. His body, bearing marks of severe torture, was found in a canal in Punjab province two days later.

He is widely believed to have been seized by intelligence officials for writing that terrorists attacked a key naval base in Karachi May 22 after the navy refused to free sailors held for suspected militant links.

The Supreme Court is monitoring the probe in his murder. Another report said that police had failed to access the email system of Shahzad. Binyamin also said that police were on the trail of those involved in the murder of the minister.

He said police had arrested a suspect, who had provided useful leads. On that basis, police had identified the others involved in the crime.  He expressed confidence that they too would also be arrested soon.

Bhatti, a 42-year-old Christian, was shot dead March 2 as he left his mother's house in the heart of Islamabad. His death was attributed to his statements against the country's blasphemy laws, a stand which also claimed the life of Punjab Governor Salman Taseer in January this year.

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