RAWALPINDI, Pakistan – A suicide attacker detonated a bomb in a parking area at the international airport that serves Pakistan's capital late Tuesday, wounding at least two police and killing himself, officials said.
A security official stopped the bomber, who was on foot, said Mohammed Farooq, a police official at the central control room in Rawalpindi, where the airport is located. After a brief exchange of fire, the attacker detonated the bomb, he said.
Interior Minister Aftab Khan Sherpao confirmed it was a suicide bombing. Farooq said two police officers were wounded, one seriously, and Pakistani media reported three had been killed in the explosion, but further confirmation of the deaths was unavailable.
Another police official, Mohammed Afzal, said the blast damaged several cars and hurt some people. Police cordoned off the area, and the wounded people were being transported to a hospital, he said.
Mohammed Sarib, who was at the airport to collect someone arriving on a flight, said he saw a man exchanging fire with security officials. "That man later blew himself up," he told The Associated Press.
A security official said on condition of anonymity that airport security officials arrested a man who was trying to flee the scene. It was unclear whether the detained man was a suspected accomplice of the attacker.
The bombing follows a series of suicide attacks targeting security forces in northwestern Pakistan, where pro-Taliban militants are active, and a Jan. 26 blast at Islamabad's Marriott Hotel that killed one security guard and wounded seven other people.
Authorities have yet to identify the Marriott Hotel attacker but suspect the bombings could be in retaliation of a recent Pakistani army airstrike on an suspected Al Qaeda hideout near the Afghan border that a prominent Pakistani militant vowed to avenge.