Shortly after entering Kafoar Dheri area, a suicide bomber accidently detonated his vest, killing himself and two fellow militants. They were planning a series of suicide bombings in the city.
SSP Cantt Kashif Zulfiqar told that two of the terrorists look like foreigners while one seems local. All of them were equipped with suicide vests, automatic weapons and hand grenades.
Police defused a jacket fitted on the dead body of a second would-be bomber and recovered a Kalashnikov rifle, eight hand grenades and hundreds of live bullets.
The blast took place at a short distance from Warsak Road where dozens of educational institutions are situated.
“Their target was not known but they were moving towards a crowded area where there are several police and military check posts,” a senior local police official said.
Tehreek-e-Taliban and other militant groups regularly target military and civilian installations as part of an insurgency, which has claimed tens of thousands of lives since it began in 2004.
The incident comes two days after twin bomb blasts targeting a police patrol, killed at least one policeman and wounded 19 others in Peshawar.
Earlier, eight Al-Qaeda militants were killed during a raid in the central city of Multan after learning of their plans to attack a local university.
The operation, which officials said was carried out on Wednesday night after an intelligence tip-off, occurred on the city’s outskirts, a spokesman for the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) of Punjab, told AFP on the condition of anonymity.
“On the basis of the information, a joint team of ISI (Inter-Services Intelligence) and CTD Multan carried out a raid at the meeting point, near the village of Nawabpur on the bank of the river Chenab in Multan, resulting in intense fire from the militants,” he said.
The CTD official said the militants fired rockets and hand grenades during the encounter, and several were able to escape.
Two of the men who were killed were said to have murdered a senior military officer while another, “Hafiz Abdul Mateen” was accused of masterminding a 2009 attack on a mosque in Rawalpindi that killed around 40 people.
No security officials were said to have been killed or injured in the raids.
In 2015, Pakistan stepped up a multi-pronged offensive against Islamist and other militants through military operations, raids, as well as a crackdown on some hardline seminaries and money laundering as part of its “National Action Plan”.
It came in the wake of a Taliban massacre at a Peshawar army school in December 2014 in which 134 children were killed.