Seven people, all members of an anti-Taliban peace committee, were killed on Monday when their car was targeted with a remote control bomb in Pakistan’s northwest tribal region near the border with Afghanistan.
The incident occurred in mountainous Dogdara area of the Upper Dir district in the Pakhtunkhwa province bordering Afghanistan.
Those killed in Dir upper blast were members of an anti-Taliban peace committee and included a local councilor named Zakir Shah.
A remote-controlled bomb, planted in the double cabin vehicle, went off, killing seven people. No occupant of the vehicle survived.
According to police, local peace committee Chief Haji Motabar Khan was the target of the bomb blast.
However, police said the peace committee chief was not in the vehicle targeted.
The blast happened when the members of the committee were returning from a jirga in Panaghar area held to discuss a local issue.
Eyewitnesses said the blast was so powerful that the vehicle veered off the road and plunged into a nearby river. People saw body parts strewn across the hillside.
“The blast flung body parts everywhere at the site of the attack. Six of bodies were recovered from the river,” an eyewitness said.
“The blast created a huge crater in the ground,” he said. No militant organisation claimed responsibility for the attack.
Dogdarra was the only pocket in Upper Dir where militants had secretly gained a foothold but the locals evicted them. In that fight in 2009, the local villagers had killed scores of Taliban militants and torched dozens of their supporters’ houses. The militants have found refuge in neighbouring Afghanistan from where they make attempts to target members of the peace committees to avenge their defeat.
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