akistani officials announced the capture of an Uzbek militant who claimed al-Qaeda plotted the March suicide bombing that killed a US diplomat and four others in Karachi days before US President George W. Bush visited Pakistan.
The Uzbek, who was not identified, was arrested last month after militants attacked a security post near Wana, the main town in the South Waziristan tribal region, which borders Afghanistan, an intelligence official said on Wednesday. The Uzbek was wounded in the fight.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said the Uzbek told interrogators that he belonged to Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda terror network and was among planners of the March 2 bombing near the US consulate in the southern city of Karachi.
The detained militant said the attack was launched to coincide with a visit two days later by Bush. Despite the bombing, Bush went ahead with his trip to Pakistan for talks with the country's president, an ally in the US war on terror, General Pervez Musharraf.
Another official said the Uzbek claimed that al-Qaeda organized Pakistani militants to carry out the attack. The official, who also spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitive nature of his work, provided no details on the local militants.
But days after the attack took place, investigators accused a Pakistani militant organization called Jundallah, or Allah's Brigade, of being behind it. That group has been blamed for attacks on other US and Christian targets in Pakistan.
It was not immediately clear if the Pakistanis mentioned by the Uzbek were members of Jundallah. It was also unclear why word of his capture took a month to surface.
The bombing happened just meters from the gate of the US consulate in one of Karachi's most heavily guarded neighborhoods. Guards tried to stop the bomber's car at a checkpoint, but the attacker sped off and rammed into the diplomat's sports utility vehicle, killing the envoy and his Pakistani driver. A guard and woman nearby also died, and 52 people were wounded.
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