Suicide bomber kills 6 in northwest Pakistan

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By HUSSAIN AFZAL, Associated Press

PARACHINAR, Pakistan (AP) — A suicide bomber on a motorcycle attacked a pro-government tribal elder's vehicle in northwest Pakistan on Monday, killing at least six people, police said.

It was not immediately clear whether the elder, Malik Habibullah Khan, was among the dead, but his vehicle was damaged in the blast. The explosion in Hangu district of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province also wounded about a dozen people, several of whom are in critical condition, local police chief Aleem Khan said.

The blast damaged several nearby vehicles and shops.

No one has claimed responsibility for the attack. Suspicion likely will fall on the Pakistani Taliban, which has been fighting a bloody insurgency against the government that has killed thousands of civilians and security personnel.

The Pakistani government has encouraged tribesmen in the northwest to form militias to fight against the Taliban. The militants have carried out many retaliatory attacks against these groups.

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Associated Press writer Riaz Khan contributed to this report from Peshawar, Pakistan.

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