At least 11 security officials were martyred when a suicide bomber blew himself up near a Pakistan Army camp in Kabal area of Swat on Saturday, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.

Thirteen other soldiers were injured in the bombing that was carried out at the sports area of an army unit, the military's media wing said in a statement.


What we know so far

  • At least 11 soldiers, including an officer, lost their lives in the attack

  • The attack was a suicide bombing, says ISPR

  • The suicide bomber targeted recreational area of an army unit in Swat

  • 13 officials were injured in the attack


The attack was claimed by the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) in an email to journalists, AFP reported.

ISPR had earlier said three soldiers were martyred in the attack. The death toll rose after seven critically injured soldiers succumbed to their injuries. An officer is among those martyred in the attack, ISPR said.

Initial reports suggested that the bomber blew himself up in a ground where soldiers were playing volleyball.

According to some sources, as many as 16 people were injured in the blast. All the injured were shifted to Combined Military Hospital Saidu Sharif.

Security forces have cordoned off the area and are searching for possible accomplices of the bomber.

The picturesque Swat Valley was under the de facto control of TTP in 2007-2009. They imposed their harsh brand of sharia law, and carried out public floggings and executions until a military operation drove them out.

The area has seen sporadic militant attacks since, including assassinations of local leaders who cooperate with the government. Today's bombing is the first major attack in over three years in the valley.

Although peace had returned to Swat after the 2009 army operation, security has been a primary concern in the region. Police and armed forces personnel jointly man several checkpoints. There are approximately 6,000 policemen in Swat and most of them are deployed on checkpoints.

A few days ago, Swat police claimed to have arrested two militants, in the same area, allegedly involved in anti-state activities during spillover of militancy to the Swat valley.

According to Kabal police, following a tipoff, they along with the CTD police raided a house in Kabal where they found a wanted militant, Siraj Khan, and arrested him. In the meantime, the CTD police carried out another raid at Shawar area in Matta tehsil and arrested a militant commander, Mohammad Ali Shah, who was allegedly involved in attacks on security forces.

Opinion

Eid and money
Updated 13 May 2021

Eid and money

Why is a thing more real when you can touch, taste or feel it as opposed to something that is only experienced?
On whose side?
Updated 15 May 2021

On whose side?

Our bevy of ambassadors, after their virtual meeting with the PM, must wonder who is on which side.

Editorial

Eid during Covid
Updated 13 May 2021

Eid during Covid

It is indisputable that our actions now will prevent matters from becoming far worse.
Updated 14 May 2021

Foreign policy gaffes

MIXED messages, retractions and clarifications from the government have become an all-too-common occurrence when it...
Zimbabwe series win
Updated 15 May 2021

Zimbabwe series win

For millions of Pakistani fans, it was a thrilling experience to see their team returning to its winning ways.
PM’s Saudi visit
Updated 12 May 2021

PM’s Saudi visit

It is very important that Pakistan take no step, or agree to any demand, that can have an adverse effect on national sovereignty.
12 May 2021

A new intifada?

THE situation in the occupied territories over the past few days has been incendiary, with tensions boiling over as...
Updated 12 May 2021

SOP violations

ON Monday, Sindh Police officials were given a well-deserved slap on the wrist by a judicial magistrate in Karachi...