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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Pakistan Taliban claims responsibility for attack on ex-minister

IRNA - Islamic Republic News Agency

Islamabad, March 4, IRNA -- Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for a suicide attack on a former interior minister of Pakistan, Aftab Ahmad Khan, who escaped unhurt in the attack in northwest of the country on Saturday.

A policeman died and four others were injured in the attack in Charsadda district, police officer Nisar Marwat told reporters. He said that several civilians were also injured.

Local media reported that two policemen were killed in the attack.

He said the bomber blew himself up near the car of the former minister who was returning from a public meeting of his Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP-Sherpao group).

Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani has strongly condemned the suicide attack, the PM office said.

TV footage showed Sherpao sitting in a hospital in Peshawar, the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, along with his son, Sikandar Sherpao who was also with him in the vehicle at the time of the attack.

Sherpao, who is member of the National Assembly, told reporters that the attacks cannot stop him from his political activities.

Reports also said that a member of the provincial assembly Mohammad Ali Sherpao’s party as well as the driver were also injured in the attack.

Sherpao, who has survived several attacks in the past, has served as Interior Minister in the government of Pervez Musharraf (2002-2008).

Taliban spokesman for the Mohmand tribal region called reporters in Peshawar and said they attacked the former minister.

Taliban accuses Sherpao of carrying out operations against the militants and also arrest of several of their leaders.

Islamic Republic News Agency/IRNA NewsCode: 80022267

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