Suicide bomber kills 19 in Pakistan
Last Updated: Thursday, February 11, 2010, 00:21
Peshawar: A suicide bomber struck a vehicle carrying Pakistani security personnel in the restive Khyber tribal region on Wednesday, killing 19 people, including eleven security personnel.

The teenage bomber, who was on foot, was hiding in a roadside market in Jamrud sub-division of Khyber Agency.

He detonated his explosive jacket when the vehicle was passing the area, witnesses said.

Eleven personnel of the Khasadar militia, including an officer, and eight civilians were killed by the blast.

Three tribal elders were among the civilians who died. A dozen people, most of them security personnel, were injured.

Some seriously injured persons were taken to the North West Frontier Province capital of Peshawar, located about five kilometres away.

Officials said the officer who was killed in the attack had received threats from militants as he had conducted successful operations against rebels in recent months.

The officer, Zarmat Khan, was nominated for a gallantry medal that was scheduled to be awarded to him on March 23.

Local residents said traffic on the Pakistan- Afghanistan highway was suspended after the attack. Security forces cordoned off the site of the blast and launched a search operation.

The vehicle of the Khasadar force and three others cars were destroyed by the explosion.

No group claimed responsibility for the attack. Several militant groups, including the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan and Lashkar-e-Islam, are active in the Khyber Agency which borders Afghanistan.

Militants in the Khyber Agency regularly attack tankers and trucks ferrying oil and supplies to US and NATO forces in Afghanistan.


First Published: Thursday, February 11, 2010, 00:21

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