Taliban militant kills at least thirteen in northwest Pakistan

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A suicide bomber has killed at least thirteen people in Swat valley, North-West Frontier Province, Pakistan. The Pakistan Taliban claimed responsibility for this attack. The attack occurred at a security checkpoint in the city of Saidu Sharif.

According to Ibrahim Khan, a policeman in the district, 37 people were injured in the attack. He added that the bomber, who was dropped from a motorized rickshaw, approached a checkpoint which is manned by army men and police officers. When the attack did not stop, the officers opened fire; the attacker blew himself up at this juncture.

"Our men carried out these attacks and more strikes will continue all over the country because the entire Pakistan has become a colony of the United States," said Azam Tariq, a spokesman for the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan via telephone to news agencies. "Our 2,000 suicide bombers, who have already spread across the country, will act against security personnel and government installations."

Major General Ashfaq Nadeem said two soldiers and two policemen had died in the incident. "Such acts cannot demoralise us. I want to assure the people of Swat that we will continue fighting till the last Taliban are eliminated," he said to the media.

Zia-ur-Rehman, 24, a victim, said he was traveling in a different rickshaw when the attacker detonated the bomb and his vehicle was hit. "I thought somebody picked me up and then threw me down. Everybody was crying," claimed the injured man.

The attack came just a day after over 40 died in a series of blasts in the Iqbal Town area of Lahore. After the first, large attack, the same region was hit the same night. Three people were injured in the comparatively small blast, said police officials.