“The Americans killed were members of the Blackwater group. We know they are responsible for bomb blasts in Peshawar and other Pakistani cities,” a Taliban spokesman told Dawn. “We have warned we will take revenge and today we have avenged the deaths of innocent people.”
Initial reports identified the US dead as either aid workers or journalists. Dawn initially called them officials with the US Agency for International Development, while AFP cited an official from the paramilitary Frontier Corps calling them foreign aid workers, and sources told the Associated Press (AP) they were “part of a small, little-publicized, US mission to train members of the paramilitary Frontier Corps to better fight al-Qaida and Taliban militants.”
Three schoolchildren are reported to have been killed in the attack, which took place near the village of Koto in Hajibad in the district of Lower Dir. (Click here to see a map.) The area lies between Afghanistan and the Swat Valley, which Pakistani forces retook from the Taliban in a military campaign last year.