July 12th, 2024

Suicide bomber attacks police station in northwest Pakistan, killing 3 officers and wounding 16

By The Associated Press on December 11, 2023.

PESHAWAR, Pakistan (AP) – A suicide bomber detonated his explosive-laden vehicle at a police station’s main gate in northwest Pakistan on Tuesday, killing at least three policemen and wounding 16 others, officials said. Some militants also opened fire and a shootout between them and security forces was still ongoing, police officer Kamal Khan said.

Khan said the attack happened in Dera Ismail Khan, a city in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan. The province is a former stronghold of the militant Pakistani Taliban group, also known as Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, or TTP.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa has witnessed a rise in violence with several deadly attacks. In January, at least 101 people were killed when a suicide bomber targeted a mosque in Peshawar.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but suspicion is likely to fall on the Pakistani Taliban, who have stepped up attacks on security forces since 2022. Authorities say the insurgents have become emboldened while living openly in Afghanistan since the Taliban takeover of that country in 2021.

The TTP, though a separate group, is closely allied with the Afghan Taliban.

Dera Ismail Khan is located near South Waziristan, a former sanctuary for militants. Pakistan’s army carried out multiple operations against militants there after some attacked an army-run school, killing more than 150 people, mostly school children, in 2014.

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