Suicide bomber kills 20 in Pakistan's northwest, Taliban claim attack
The Pakistani Taliban claimed credit for today's deadly suicide attack on a police station in Pakistan's northwest.
A suicide bomber rammed a car packed with explosives into a local police station in the village of Norar, just outside of the city of Bannu in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province. Six policemen and 14 civilians were reported killed in the attack, according to SAMAA.
Taliban spokesman Azam Tariq claimed that one of the group's suicide bombers carried out the attack to avenge US Predator airstrikes in Pakistan's tribal areas.
"We claim responsibility for this attack. We will continue such attacks unless the drone attacks are stopped," Tariq told AFP.
The Taliban often cite the Predator strikes as an excuse to carry out suicide attacks against Pakistani civilians.
The US carried out a Predator strike earlier today, killing four "foreigners" in the Mir Ali area of North Waziristan. The US has carried out five such airstrikes this year, and 117 during 2010. The Predators target al Qaeda's leaders and its external operations network, as well as the Taliban, the Haqqani Network, and allied Central and South Asian jihadist groups who support al Qaeda as well as carry out attacks in Afghanistan.
Today's suicide bombing is the the first major attack by the Taliban since Dec. 25, 2010, when a female suicide bomber detonated her vest at a World Food Program distribution point in the tribal agency of Bajaur, killing 42 people. The Taliban and al Qaeda, under the command of Qari Zia Rahman, have established cells to train female suicide bombers in both Afghanistan and Pakistan.
The Taliban and the allied Lashkar-e-Jhangvi also carried out a series of four suicide attacks in the first two weeks of December 2010 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Baluchistan, targeting Shia worshipers, a provincial minister, and a tribal meeting.