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Taliban militants strike in Pakistan's North West Frontier Province

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Taliban militants in Pakistan claimed responsibility for a suicide attack in the country's volatile northwest on Sunday that killed at least 13 people and injured more than 20.

The attack occurred in the town of Mardan, 37 miles north of Peshewar, the capital of the North West Frontier Province (NWFP), which is considered a haven for militants with links to the Taliban and Al Qaeda.

A Taliban spokesman said that Tehrik-e-Taliban (Pakistan Taliban Movement) carried out the bombing in revenge for a suspected United States missile strike on a rebel camp in Pakistan's tribal belt last week, reports Agence France-Presse.

That missile strike killed 14 people in the town of Damadola. Tribal leaders and Pakistani officials say it was carried out by the US; the US military has not yet commented.

Pakistan's leading Dawn newspaper reports that the NWFP chief minister, Aneer Haider Khan Hoti, said the attack was designed to sabotage a Pakistan government-initiated peace process.

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