LAHORE: A Pakistani court has handed down over 30 years of rigorous imprisonment to two members of the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban (TTP) group for carrying out terrorist activities in the country's Punjab province, an official said on Saturday.
The TTP, also known as the Pakistan Taliban, is believed to have close links to the Al-Qaeda terror group.
Set up as an umbrella group of several militant outfits in 2007, its main aim is to impose its strict brand of Islam across Pakistan.
"An anti-terrorism court (ATC) of Sahiwal on Friday awarded 34 years rigorous imprisonment to two TTP terrorists - Imran Razik and Saddam Hussein Musa - for their alleged involvement in terror activities in the Punjab province," a court official told PTI.
He said ATC judge Zahid Gaznavi handed down the sentence after the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) presented evidence in the court.
The official further said the CTD arrested the convicts in May 2022 from Pakpattan city, about 200 kilometres from Lahore, and recovered weapons, explosives and suicide vests from their possession.
Meanwhile, the CTD has arrested eight suspected terrorists from different areas of the province.
According to a CTD statement issued on Saturday, eight suspects mostly belonging to the TTP have been arrested and cases registered against them in different police stations of the province.
The TTP has been blamed for several deadly attacks across Pakistan, including an attack on army headquarters in 2009, assaults on military bases and the 2008 bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad.
In 2012, Nobel laureate Malala Yousafzai was attacked by the TTP.
In 2014, the Pakistani Taliban stormed the Army Public School in the northwestern city of Peshawar, killing at least 150 people, including 131 students.
The attack sent shockwaves across the world and was widely condemned.