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– ISLAMABAD’S EGYPTIAN ENBASSY BOMBING

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On 11/19/1995, two men approached the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan’s capital, at approximately 09:30, and killed its security guards with guns and grenades. A pickup truck loaded with a 120 kg bomb, built by Midhat Mursi, then rushed into the compound. The driver set off the bomb, blowing apart the gates. Three minutes later, a second, larger bomb also detonated and the side of the building crumbled.

The 2 bombers, the Second Secretary for the embassy, 3 Egyptian security guards and 12 others, including Pakistani security guards, civilians and as many as 4 other diplomats were killed.  A total of 16 casualties and 2 suicide bombers were killed in the attack. Approximately 60 others were wounded.

Three ephemeral groups had all simultaneously taken responsibility for the attack, including al-Jihad, the International Justice Group and the Islamic Holy War group. A former CIA agent Robert Baer claimed that Imad Mughniyah “facilitated the travel” of somebody involved, and that one of his deputies had “provided a stolen Lebanese passport to one of the planners of the bombing”.

Immediately following the bombing, Pakistan announced the arrests of six Egyptians, two Afghans and two Jordanians as accomplices in the attack.  

The Canadian Ahmed Said Khadr was arrested a week later, on 11/27/1995, after it was discovered that his son in law Khalid Abdullah, was believed to have purchased one of the vehicles used in the bombing. Ahmed Said Khadr was released in 03/1996 based on a lack of evidence indicating he had any involvement.

In 04/1996, Pakistan announced they had arrested 2 Sudanese men: Syed Ahmed and Bashir Bahar Qadim in Faisalabad in connection with the attacks.

In 05/1999, Hasan Ahmed Rabi was arrested in Kuwait, and extradited to Egypt where he was accused of involvement with the Egyptian Embassy bombing.

In 2001, Egyptian force surrounded Khadr’s house in Peshawar, and requested that Pakistani ISI forces offer assistance in capturing the man they still believed had knowledge of the Egyptian Embassy bombing in Islamabad. Instead, the ISI contacted the Taliban, who sent a diplomatic car to pick up Ahmed Said Khadr and bring him into Afghanistan.

Mahmoud Jaballah, an EGYPTIAN Islamic Jihad member, who was also implicated in the 08/07/1998 attacks on USA embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, was arrested, eventually, in Canada, in 1999.

It was the EGYPTIAN JI first success under Ayman Al Zawahiri’s leadership in his attempt to expend his struggle against the Egyptian regime overseas. The international infrastructure of the EGYPTIAN Islamic Jihad, led and blended later into the world-wide network of Al Qaeda. 

Ayman Al Zawahiri will later write in a book in which he admitted responsibility on the bombings, “The bomb left the embassy’s ruined building as an eloquent and clear message.”

 

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