The Taliban claimed credit for today’s suicide attack in Peshawar that killed at least 12 people, including three Frontier Corps troops. The target of the attack was the Commandant of the Frontier Corps. From Dawn:
The bomber blew himself up near a military checkpost, barely 500 yards from the US consulate, on Peshawar’s Fakhr-i-Alam Road, which connects the city’s Mall Road and Cantonment Road.
The Corps headquarters is also located half a kilometre away from the site of the attack, for which the Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility.
The bomber intended to target FC Commandant Abdul Majeed Marwat, security officials said. The senior paramilitary official, however, managed to escape the attack relatively unhurt.
Police Superintendent Mohammad Faisal said eight to 10 kilograms of explosive were used in the blast, he added.
The suicide attack is the second in Peshawar, the provincial capital, in less than two weeks. On March 19, two suicide bombers attacked the Judicial Complex in Peshawar, killing four people and wounding another 47, including two women.
The Pakistani government continues to claim the military has “broken [the] Taliban’s back,” a claim that, dare I say, is ludicrous on its face. The Taliban just took over the Tirah Valley in Khyber, near Peshawar, and continue to control or contest significant areas in the tribal agencies and the settled districts in the northwest. And its expansion into Karachi has been well-documented. The Pakistani Taliban is so “broken” that it conducts cross-border operations with its Afghan counterparts in Paktika province, according to a statement that was obtained by the SITE Intelligence Group.
For more on Pakistani officials’ claims the Taliban is divided and on the run, see this Threat Matrix report from December 2012.
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