Pak Taliban declares an "open war" against Pakistan

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Islamabad, Aug 13 : The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has declared an "open war" against the Pakistan Army in response to its offensives in the tribal areas.

The TTP said that it staged a bombing that destroyed a Pakistan air force truck and killed up to 14 people, including a child.

"It is an open war between us and them," said Pakistani Taliban spokesman Maulvi Omar.

"If these kinds of operations continue against us in Swat and in the tribal areas, we will continue this," he added.

The blast in Peshawar escalated the conflict in a region where the new government is struggling to contain increasingly brazen militants. It dealt another blow to efforts to strike peace deals with hard-liners in the Swat Valley and other areas.

The bomb hit the air force truck as it crossed a bridge on the outskirts of Peshawar. The blast tore a big hole in the bridge deck and reduced the Mazda truck to a smouldering wreck. The site was littered with debris, blood and a mangled motorcycle.

A provincial government spokesman, Mian Iftikhar Hussain, said the explosion killed 14 people, most of them air force personnel, and wounded more than a dozen.

The bombing follows threats from Taliban militants to launch attacks on the government for military operations in the northwestern frontier region bordering Afghanistan.

ANI

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