Obama condemns 'outrageous' suicide attack in northwestern Pak

Honolulu, Dec 26 (ANI): United States President Barack Obama has condemned Saturday's deadly suicide bomb strike in northwestern Pakistan as an "outrageous terrorist attack", in which dozens of people were killed at a World Food Programme project.

"I strongly condemn the outrageous terrorist attack in Khar, Pakistan," the BBC quoted Obama, as saying.

"Killing innocent civilians outside a World Food Programme distribution point is an affront to the people of Pakistan, and to all humanity," he added.

A female bomber killed at least 43 people in the attack on a large crowd receiving food aid in Khar in the Bajaur region, which is located in Pakistan's tribal areas close to the Afghan border - a Taliban and al-Qaeda stronghold.

The army has carried out numerous operations in Bajaur, and declared several times that they have cleared the area of militants, but once again the insurgents have proved that they can strike back.

"The United States stands with the people of Pakistan in this difficult time, and will strongly support Pakistan's efforts to ensure greater peace, security and justice for its people," said Obama.

The United Kingdom government also condemned the attack, along with the Pakistani government.

UK Minister for South Asia Alistair Burt said: "This appalling attack on innocent refugees is a cruel reminder of the indiscriminate aims of the terrorist and an example of why the world must work together to do all we can to confront a menace without boundaries."

Pakistan Prime Minister Yusuf Raza Gilani said that those responsible for the suicide attack had no regard for humanity or religion, and that the fight against militants would continue.

Pakistan's Taliban said that they ordered the attack on the distribution centre, which is used by the World Food Programme and other aid agencies.

They said that the rebels had targeted the local people - displaced members of the Salarzai tribe - because of their support for the Pakistani military.

An estimated 300 people were queuing for food at the time of the blast, with reports claiming that at least 100 people were injured in the bombing. (ANI)

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