Islamabad:A teenage would-be suicide bomber who was arrested when he tried to blow himself up at a Sufi shrine in Punjab province on Friday claimed that up to 350 suicide bombers were being trained in Taliban-run camps in North Waziristan.
Umar Fidai, 14, was arrested during a suicide attack on Sakhi Sarwar shrine near Dera Ghazi Khan on April 3 that killed 50 people. Umar was seriously injured by an explosion while his colleague Ismail carried out the attack by detonating his explosive vest.
In interviews to several TV news channels, Umar claimed up to 350 suicide bombers were being trained in the Mir Ali region of North Waziristan Agency.
He said Arabs, Uzbeks and Tajiks are among militants active in the region.
Umar, who claimed he was a Class 10 student, said his mission was to strike the Sakhi Sarwar shrine half an hour after the first attack so that people gathered at the site could be targeted.
“I was studying in Esa Khel area of North Waziristan. Once when I was going home from school, Qari Zafar, who was in-charge of the Taliban suicide squad, met me and told me that children who carry out fidai (martyrdom) attacks go to paradise,” Umar.
He apologised to the people, saying he had realised that he made a mistake.