DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Pakistan – Suspected Islamic militants set off three bombs Sunday, one of which exploded near a police van and killed seven people in northwestern Pakistan, officials said.
The two other bombs damaged walls of a police station and a government building.
A powerful roadside bomb blew up the police vehicle while it was on patrol in Dera Ismail Khan, a city in northwestern Pakistan about 180 miles southwest of the capital, Islamabad, local police official Dar Ali Khattak said.
Three policemen, three paramilitary police and a passer-by were killed in the explosion on a road in the city's Kotli Imam neighborhood, Khattak said. Four other bystanders — two women and two men — were injured, he said.
About four hours later, a bomb exploded near the scene of the first one, cracking a wall at a nearby government building but injuring no one, another police official, Khuda Dad Mahsud, said.
At about 8 p.m., a third bomb went off outside a police station in the heart of Dera Ismail Khan, damaging its main wall but causing no casualties, Khattak said.
No one claimed responsibility for the explosions, but Khattak blamed Islamic militants from a neighboring tribal region.
Dera Ismail Khan is near the South Waziristan tribal region where Islamic militants are believed to be hiding. The fighters have been blamed for attacks on security forces.
In Tank, a city near Dera Ismail Khan, police issued an alert last week calling for increased security following reports that militants from South Waziristan and neighboring North Waziristan might be entering the area to shelter with fellow tribesmen.
The militants also might carry out "sabotage acts" against the government or kidnap officials in the area, according to a copy of the warning obtained by The Associated Press.