ANP leader among 6 killed in Pak suicide attack

An anti-Taliban Awami National Party (ANP) leader was among six people killed when a motorcycle-borne suicide bomber blew himself up near his car in Buner district of Pakistan’s restive northwest on Saturday.

Apart from ANP leader Fateh Khan, the blast, for which Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan claimed responsibility, left three of his bodyguards and two passersby dead in Dagar area of Buner district in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province, about 100 km from Islamabad, police said.
The bombing took place at a spot close to Khan’s office.

Deputy Inspector General of Police Akhtar Hayyat said it was a suicide attack, adding that the bomber was riding a motorcycle.

The three injured were taken to nearby hospitals. Security forces cordoned off the area and launched a search operation.

Claiming responsibility

Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan claimed responsibility for the attack and told the media that Khan was targeted for leading an armed resistance against the militants.

Khan was the leader of a local militia that backed the government’s drive against the Taliban.

He was among the political leaders and businessmen who played a key role in forming the militia to prevent Taliban militants from Swat entering Buner district three years ago.
The Taliban were flushed out of the region after the army launched an operation against the militants in Swat and nearby areas in early 2009.

Despite this setback, the banned Pakistani Taliban has killed scores of leaders and workers of the ANP.

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