NOWSHERA, March 21: Seventeen people, among them three women, died and 28 others were injured on Thursday when a car bomb tore through a camp set up for internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Jalozai.

According to police, the blast took place near a food distribution point of the World Food Programme.

District Police Officer (DPO) Mohammad Hussain confirmed 15 people were killed. The bomb was planted in an abandoned car parked in the vicinity of the food distribution point and the camp’s administration office. Several vehicles were destroyed.

Quoting the bomb disposal squad, the DPO said it was a time device carrying about 35kg of explosives.

Soon after the blast, police and rescuers cordoned off the area. The dead and the injured were taken to Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar and Shaheed Rashid Hussain Memorial Hospital in Pabbi.

TV channels quoted Ehsanullah Ehsan, spokesman for the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan, as saying that the Taliban were not involved in the attack.

The DPO said people displaced from Akakhel, Bara and Khyber Agency lived in the camp. He said the attack might have been carried out by the banned Lashkar-i-Islam militant group led by Mangal Bagh.

Police said four suspects had been detained and they were being interrogated.

A woman working for a local non-governmental organisation was among the dead.

An official of the International Red Crescent told Dawn that all organisations working in the Jalozai camp had suspended their work.

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