A suicide bomber dressed in an all-enveloping burqa struck a crowded food distribution center in Pakistan's volatile tribal region Saturday, killing at least 42 people and injuring more than 60 others, officials said.
The attack in the town of Khar, the administrative center of the Bajaur tribal area, came amid ongoing fighting between Pakistan security forces and insurgents in the region bordering Afghanistan. A major clash in the neighboring Mohmand tribal area about 24 hours earlier had left 11 troops and about two dozen militants dead, according to Los Angeles Times.
"It was a suicide attack," Mutabar Khan, a local government official said by telephone today. The bomb detonated at about 8:30 a.m. local time when officials were distributing food among the victims of this year's floods, said Gull Rehman, a spokesman for the government of the area.
Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani condemned the attack and said his government's fight against militants will "continue till their complete elimination," according to an e-mailed statement issued by the Information Ministry in the capital, Islamabad, Bloomberg reports.