ISLAMABAD – The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for a suicide attack that killed 11 soldiers and wounded 13 in the Swat Valley.
Authorities say Saturday's attack was the first in over three years in the northwestern region once ruled by militants.
In a statement sent to media, the extremist group says a lone suicide bomber carried out the attack to avenge the killing and arrests of fellow militants. The bomber detonated his explosives vest near an empty lot where soldiers were playing volleyball.
Islamic militants ruled the picturesque Swat Valley from 2007 until a massive military operation routed them in 2009. Pakistan says militants who escaped from Swat and elsewhere are now operating out of the Kunar province in neighboring Afghanistan.