Pakistani girl forced to wear suicide vest, manages to escape
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Police said Monday that militants kidnapped a 9-year-old girl on her way to school and forced her to wear a suicide bomb vest. The girl and police said she managed to escape her captors as they directed her to attack a paramilitary checkpoint in northwest Pakistan.
Sohana Jawed, who is in third grade, said she was abducted near her home in the northwestern city of Peshawar on Saturday and taken to Lower Dir district, a four-hour drive away, where she was found Monday.
Police in Lower Dir presented Jawed at a news conference, where she told her story dressed in her blue and white school uniform.
But police in Peshawar said they haven’t received a complaint of a missing girl and haven’t identified a resident with her name.
Initial police reports of security incidents in Pakistan are sometimes wrong.
Militants in the country have often used young boys to carry out attacks, but the use of young girls is rare.
Jawed said during the news conference that she was grabbed by two women while on her way to school and forced into a car carrying two men.
One of the kidnappers put a handkerchief over her mouth that knocked her unconscious, Jawed said in a separate interview with a local TV station.
When she woke up and started crying, one of the women gave her cookies laced with something that again knocked her out, Jawed said. The next time she woke up she found herself in a strange home, she said.
“This morning, the women and men forced me to put on the heavy jacket and put me in the car again,” said Jawed.
The suicide vest contained nearly 20 pounds of explosives and seemed to be designed to be set off remotely, Lower Dir police chief Salim Marwat told The Associated Press.