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Blast kills 10 near U.S. Consulate in Pakistan

From Zahir Shah Sherazi, for CNN
updated 8:07 AM EDT, Fri March 29, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The suicide bomber also wounds dozens
  • He rides up to a security checkpoint on a motorbike
  • Peshawar is adjacent to Pakistan's restive tribal region in the northwest
  • It is near the border with Afghanistan and rife with Islamist extremists

Peshawar, Pakistan (CNN) -- The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for a blast that killed 10 people near the U.S. Consulate in Peshawar on Friday.

A suicide bomber rode a motorbike up to a security checkpoint a third of a mile from the consulate and detonated 22 pounds of explosives attached to his body, police spokesman Mohammad Faisal said. Along with those killed, the strike also injured 31 others, Pakistani military officials said.

Violent attacks occur frequently around Peshawar, which is in Pakistan's northwest near the border with Afghanistan and adjacent to Pakistan's tribal region.

Among the dead were four men and two women. No one from the consulate was injured in the blast, military officials said.

2012: History of Pakistani Taliban

Taliban spokesman Ehsanullah Ehsan passed along the claim of responsibility to CNN in a phone conversation.

A week ago, a car bomb exploded at a nearby camp for internally displaced people, killing 12 and injuring 32 others. The Jalozai camp houses hundreds of thousands of people who have left the country's tribal region.

Peshawar is the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, which is rife with Islamic extremists, including the Pakistani Taliban. It has been the site of recent clashes between Pakistani security forces and militants.

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