Four killed, 28 wounded in Pakistan attacks

Four people, including two children, were killed and 28 wounded on Saturday in a bomb blast and a militant attack on Pakistani troops, security officials said.

The children and one civilian were killed by a remote-control motorcycle bomb targeting security forces in Punjgur district of the insurgency-hit southwest province of Baluchistan.

"Three people including two children were killed and 26 people were injured, the target was a paramilitary convoy," a senior security official told AFP.

Five soldiers were among the wounded, officials said.

An official of the paramilitary Frontier Corps confirmed the incident. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Hundreds of civilians have been killed since Baluch rebels rose up in 2004 against the federal government, demanding political autonomy and a greater share of profits from the region's oil, gas and mineral resources.

The second incident occurred in the lawless northwest tribal district of South Waziristan, where a group of militants attacked a security checkpost in Ladha town, triggering a gunfight which killed one soldier and wounded two others.

"One soldier was killed and two were injured in the attack, three militants were also killed in the retaliatory fire," a security official in Peshawar, the main city in the northwest, told AFP.

Once notorious as a bastion of Pakistani Taliban and Uzbek fighters, Ladha was reduced to a shell of damaged buildings, piles of rubble and a ruined paramilitary fort after the military launched an operation in 2009.

Since US Navy SEALs killed Osama bin Laden in Pakistan last month, American officials have been increasing pressure on Islamabad to launch an offensive in neighbouring North Waziristan to destroy militant sanctuaries.

Washington has called Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal belt the most dangerous place on Earth and the global headquarters of Al-Qaeda, where Taliban and other Al-Qaeda-linked networks have carved out strongholds.

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