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7 killed, 14 injured in suicide blast outside Pak court

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7 killed, 14 injured in suicide blast outside Pak court
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Peshawar, Feb 21 (PTI) Suicide bombers today tried to storm a court in Pakistan's restive Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, killing at least seven persons and injuring 14 others in the latest terrorist attack in the country.

The attackers opened fire and threw grenades as they attempted to enter the sessions court premises in Tangi, prompting retaliatory fire by the security forces deployed there.

Three attackers were killed in the police action.

Jamaat-ul-Ahrar (JuA), a faction of the Pakistani Taliban, claimed responsibility for the attack.

"Several terrorists attacked the court and resorted to heavy firing at the main gate of the ower courts," police said.

One bomber was killed in the firing at the gate and the second was killed as he entered the court. The third bomber died when he detonated his explosives, officials said.

"Seven people were killed and 14 others were injured during the attack," Sohail Khalid, district police chief Charsadda, said, adding judges and lawyers were safe.

Khalid said due to tight security the bombers could not enter the court, but had they been successful in entering the premises it "would have been a catastrophe".

A search and rescue operation was underway, he added.

Ambulances have been rushed to Charsadda from Peshawar, approximately 30 kilometres away, where the Lady Reading Hospital has been put on high alert.

District hospitals have been put on high alert.

The latest attack came as security has been tightened across Pakistan after a recent wave of terrorist strikes killed more than 100 people.

On Thursday, a suicide bomber killed 88 people at a famed Sufi shrine in Sindh province. Following the attack, the army launched an offesive against militants and claimed to have killed more than 130 terrorists across the country.

A suicide bomber had struck a local court in Charsadda's Shabqadar area last year in March, killing 17 people.

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