Suicide bomber kills 15 in northwest Pakistan
KHAR, Pakistan, May 4 — A suicide bomber killed at least 15 people and wounded 40 today in an attack on a police checkpoint in northwest Pakistan, casting doubt on official assertions that security offensives have weakened militants.
The bomber struck near a crowded market in Bajaur, one of the unruly Pashtun tribal regions near the Afghan border where the military has mounted offensives in recent years against the al Qaeda-linked Pakistani Taliban, the biggest security threat to the country.
Abdul Haseeb, a senior government official in the region, said at least 15 people were killed and 40 wounded. At least three of the dead were policemen, including a senior officer, said another official.
Police and security forces sealed off the site of the attack.
Pakistan, a strategic US ally, has failed to break the back of the Taliban despite numerous crackdowns.
The Taliban have mounted suicide bombings, which have often killed civilians, and shooting attacks on security forces in their bid to topple the government. — Reuters