The provincial government of Sindh released a statement Saturday saying its DNA tests had “confirmed that the body parts discovered…on May 17 belong to that of Daniel Pearl of the ‘Wall Street Journal,’ U.S.A.”
Interior Minister Moinuddin Haider said Pakistan’s DNA findings mean Pearl’s remains will now be returned to his family.
The U.S. embassy in Pakistan said it had given U.S. DNA results to the Pakistan Ministry of Interior last Tuesday, but Pakistani authorities first had to conduct their own tests before turning over the body.
Pakistani authorities found the body parts in a shallow grave in a nursery garden on the outskirts of Karachi, the port city in the Sindh province, in May.
Pearl disappeared Jan. 23 in Karachi, Pakistan while he was researching possible links between militant groups and Richard Reid, who was arrested in December for allegedly trying to detonate explosives in his shoes aboard a commercial flight from Paris to Miami. Pearl’s death was confirmed in February when U.S. diplomats received a videotape depicting Pearl’s grisly murder.
A Pakistani judge convicted British-born Islamic militant Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh and three other men for Pearl’s kidnapping and murder this month. Saeed was sentenced to death by hanging for plotting Pearl’s abduction and murder, and the three accomplices were sentenced to life imprisonment, which in Pakistan typically means 25 years.
All four have filed appeals. Seven other suspects, including some who allegedly helped murder Pearl, remain at large.