The site of the attack in the Northwest Frontier Province (AFP)
July 16, 2007 -- Pakistani security forces are on high alert today after 40 people were killed in the country's northwest in a wave of militant violence.
Fourteen people, 11 of them paramilitary soldiers, were killed on July 15 in a coordinated ambush that involved two suicide attackers and a roadside bomb explosion in the Northwest Frontier Province.
Hours later, a suicide bomber targeted a police recruiting center in the city of Dera Ismail Khan, in the same province, killing 26, many of them young men taking a police entrance exam.
Interior Minister Aftab Ahmed Sherpao said the two attacks could be militants' response to a military assault on a mosque in Islamabad several days earlier. Some 75 militants were killed on July 10 when commandos stormed the fortified Lal Masjid (Red Mosque).
Also on July 15, pro-Taliban militants in the North Waziristan region on the Afghan border called off a 10-month peace deal with the government. They accuse Islamabad of violating the agreement by deploying more troops in the region.
On July 14, a suicide attack on a military convoy in North Waziristan killed 24 soldiers.
(compiled from agency reports)
EYE OF A STORM:
Afghan officials first suggested that insurgents or terrorists were crossing the border from Pakistan in 2003. Relations have run hot and cold ever since. But the roots of the problem go back much further.
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