Pakistan blocks mobile service over terror threats
KARACHI (AFP) - Pakistan shut down mobile phone networks on Friday in major cities and beefed up security across the country to prevent terror attacks at the start of the Muslim holy month of Muharram, officials said.
The networks were closed from 10am (5am GMT, 1pm Singapore time) in Karachi and Quetta, gripped by political and sectarian violence between militants from the majority Sunni Muslims and minority Shi'ite communities.
"We had intelligence reports about (the) possibility of a very big terrorist attack in Karachi and it was because of this reason that the mobile phone service was shut down," senior police official Javed Odho told AFP.
"It is a preventive measure taken to effectively counter terrorism threat," he said, adding that the service will remain suspended until Friday evening.