Updated: 02/23/2014 19:08 | By Agence France-Presse

Bomb in northwest Pakistan 'kills 10'

A bomb placed near a bus stop killed 10 people including two women and a child in a northwestern Pakistani city on Sunday, police said, adding 14 more were injured.

Bomb in northwest Pakistan 'kills 10'

Police officials examine a destroyed office of an election candidate fallowing a bomb attack in the city of Kohat on April 28, 2013 - by Basit Gilani

The bomn went off in the city of Kohat in the troubled province of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which borders Pakistan's lawless tribal areas where Al-Qaeda and Taliban-led militants have sanctuaries.

Police said around five kilogrammes (11 pounds) of explosive were planted in a cooking oil container and placed near the bus stop in the city centre before being detonated remotely. 

"After getting the latest reports from the hospitals where the dead bodies and injured were taken, we can now confirm that 10 people have been killed and 14 others are injured," district police chief Salim Khan Marwat told AFP.

The bomb exploded near police and other government offices. It was also close to a busy marketplace and an area where many minority Shiite Muslims live.

But authorities said it was too early to comment on the possible target.

The attack came hours after Pakistan air force jets bombed militant hideouts in the tribal district of Khyber, killing 18 suspected insurgents and destroying two hideouts, according to security sources.

On Saturday a roadside bomb targeting a local leader of a nationalist party in Buner district in the northwest killed three people and wounded two.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for Sunday's blast, but such attacks are regularly staged by the Pakistani Taliban.

The group has been waging a bloody campaign against the Pakistani state since 2007 which has cost thousands of lives.

Peace talks between the Taliban and the government stalled last week due to a recent surge in insurgent attacks and a claim by a Taliban faction that it had killed 23 kidnapped soldiers.

Government mediators have set a Taliban ceasefire as a precondition for another round of talks. 

But Shahidullah Shahid, a spokesman for the Pakistani Taliban, on Friday blamed Islamabad for the deadlock and urged the state to declare a ceasefire first.

According to an AFP tally, 84 people have been killed in 17 attacks across the country since January 29, when Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif announced formal talks with the Taliban. 

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