Bomb blast wounds Pakistani children
Taliban suspected of attack on primary school
A girl injured in the Bannu blast is taken to hospital
At least 16 people, mostly schoolchildren, were wounded in a powerful bomb blast in Pakistan’s troubled northwestern region on Thursday.
The explosion took place near the Government Girls Primary School No 1 in a crowded market in the Bannu district of the restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, which borders lawless tribal regions.
Police suspected Taliban militants of being behind the bomb, which was planted beneath a sewerage line and exploded a few minutes after children walked out of the school.
Of the 16 victims brought to District Hospital, 12 were schoolchildren, mostly girls, according to medics. Seven people have been discharged while nine children remain hospitalized.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the bombing. Taliban militants have however carried out bombings on hundreds of schools in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and tribal agencies over the last few years.
The group has also banned girls' education in North Waziristan, which is described by Western countries as a safe haven for terrorists.
Hours after the attack, the English daily newspaper Dawn quoted intelligence sources who said that a missile strike by an unmanned US drone killed four suspected militants in Ghulam Khan town in North Waziristan.
Last year, a Taliban gunman shot education campaigner Malala Yousafzai in the head for speaking out against the group’s repressive activities in the Swat Valley. After undergoing emergency treatment in Pakistan, she was airlifted to a hospital in the United Kingdom, where she has been living since.
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