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MENAFN - Arab News - 09/02/2013

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(MENAFN - Arab News) Ten people were killed and more than 20 wounded when a bomb exploded near a shop selling DVDs and mobile phones in Pakistan's northwestern tribal belt yesterday, officials said.

The attack happened in a market in Kalaya, the main town of Orakzai district where the military has been battling Taleban and Al-Qaeda-linked militants for years.

"The blast killed at least 10 people and wounded more than 20 others," top administration official, Mehmood Aslam, told AFP.

"According to our initial information, the bomb was planted near the video CD and mobile shop surrounded by small kiosks selling tea and other edibles," he said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, nor was it clear whether the shop was deliberately targeted or whether the bombers were targeting people sitting at the nearby kiosks having a cup of tea.

DVD and CD shops in northwestern Pakistan have been bombed in the past by militants.

Orakzai is one of seven tribal districts on the Afghan-Pakistan border where Taleban and Al-Qaeda-linked militants have carved out strongholds to plot attacks on Pakistani, Afghan and Western targets.

Islamabad says more than 35,000 people have been killed as a result of terrorism in the country since the 9/11 attacks on the United States.
No group has claimed responsibility for the bombing, but Taleban militants regularly target security forces and civilians in the area.

The blast occurred near government and security offices, according to another local administrator, Javed Khan. It damaged one of the shops in the market. Some of the wounded were in critical condition, he said.

The military has launched multiple operations against the Pakistani Taleban in the northwest since 2009, but the militant have proved resilient and continue to carry out attacks.

Orakzai is one of several areas in the semi-autonomous tribal region along the Afghan border where the military has been battling a domestic Taleban insurgency.


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