Female suicide bomber kills 4 outside Pakistani hospital

A female suicide bomber killed four people in an attack yesterday at the entrance to a hospital on Khar, the main town in Pakistan’s tribal agency of Bajaur. From Dawn:

“The woman, in her early 20s, blew up her explosives as she walked to the main entrance of the hospital. Authorities have found the attackers head and legs and are conducting a detailed investigation,” said Sarwar, an assistant political agent in the tribal region.

Officials said the bomber apparently targeted security men guarding the hospital.

Hospital officials said four other people were also injured in the bombing.

Agency health officer, Mohd Riaz, said the dead included one security personnel and two civilians, while one of the dead was a hospital worker.

While no group has claimed credit for yesterday’s bombing, the Taliban likely executed the attack. Qari Zia Rahman, the dual-hatted Taliban and al Qaeda leader who operates in Pakistan’s tribal agencies of Mohmand and Bajaur as well as in the Afghan provinces of Kunar and Nuristan, has established and runs the suicide training camps that are used to indoctrinate and train female bombers [see LWJ report, Al Qaeda, Taliban create female suicide cells in Pakistan and Afghanistan].

The Taliban have used female suicide bombers at least six times in Pakistan since December 2010. The last such attack by a female suicide bomber took place in Mohmand on Nov. 19, 2012. The Taliban in Mohmand are led by Omar Khalid al Khurasani, a dangerous commander who maintains close ties to al Qaeda and is believed to have given sanctuary to Ayman al Zawahiri in the past. Khalid also was close to slain al Qaeda emir Osama bin Laden, and his fighters are from Chechnya, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, and various Arab nations [for more information on Omar Khalid al Khurasani, see LWJ report, Taliban commander wants Pakistan’s nukes, global Islamic caliphate]. In August 2011, Khalid claimed credit for a female suicide attack in Peshawar. Khalid is closely allied with Qari Zia Rahman.

Across the border in Afghanistan, the Taliban have used female suicide bombers in at least three other attacks since June 2010. Additionally, the Hizb-i-Islami Gulbuddin (HIG), a Taliban and al Qaeda-allied group, has claimed credit for the September 2011 female suicide attack in Kabul.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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