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MUZAFFARABAD, Failed suicide attack kills bomber

muzaffarabadMUZAFFARABAD: A man blew himself up in a botched suicide bombing Sunday in Pakistani-administered Kashmir, an official said.

The bomber’s explosives went off as he was heading to a target in Rawalakot district, 120 kilometres south of regional capital Muzaffarabad.

“The bomber was trying to hit some sensitive installations but the explosive went off before time, when he was on his way to hit his target,” Chaudhry Raqeeb, the top administrative official in Rawalakot, told AFP.

He said the bomber was identified as a local resident.

Attacks blamed mostly on the Taliban have killed more than 3,700 people across Pakistan since July 2007, concentrated in the northwest and major cities rather than the northern mountains and eastern border with India.

In a separate incident, police defused a timed device hidden in a pressure cooker in a shop after being tipped off by a local security guard in a congested market in Muzaffarabad, administrative official Chaudhry Imtiaz said.

On January 6, a suicide bomber killed four Pakistani soldiers near the demarcation line with India, and officials blamed that attack on Taliban insurgents based in the northwest near the Afghan border.

Kashmir was split in two in the bloody aftermath of independence from British rule over the subcontinent in 1947. India and Pakistan each control a part of the mountainous land but both claim the region in full.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed in a nearly 20-year revolt in Indian-administered Kashmir, where militants have fought against New Delhi’s rule, but bomb attacks are rare in the Pakistani-administered zone.

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