DIR: A roadside bomb ripped through a pick-up truck in a Dir Bala on Saturday killing three people inside, officials said.
The improvised explosive device “was detonated using a remote controlled device” near the town of Dhog Darra in Upper Dir district, regional police chief Ehsanullah Khan said.
Khan added that three people were killed and eight wounded in the attack, two of whom were in critical condition.
The dead included the driver of the vehicle and two young men.
“It was a militant act aimed at creating fear among the people in the area,” Khan said.
Dhog Darra is considered the stronghold of an anti-Taliban militia set up by local people in Upper Dir district. The district lies close to eastern Afghanistan’s troubled provinces of Kunar and Nuristan.
There were no immediate claims of responsibility for the attack, but an intelligence official in Upper Dir told AFP the attackers were followers of Maulana Fazlullah, a radical cleric from the Swat valley, who fled into Afghanistan following a military offensive.
In April 2009, the army sent 30,000 troops into battle against Taliban fighters led by Fazlullah, who had terrorised local residents with a campaign of beheadings, violence and attacks on girls’ schools since 2007.
By July 2009 the army declared the picturesque Swat region back under control and said the rebels had all been killed, captured or had fled.
Pakistan officials said the rebels had regrouped in Kunar and Nuristan.
According to an AFP tally, attacks blamed on militants have killed more than 5,100 people in Pakistan since government troops raided the Lal Masjid in Islamabad five years ago.
More in KP & FATABombing kills 9 in Orakzai: Officials