Briton killed in Pakistan market explosion

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The Independent Online

A British woman was among at least eight people killed by a suicide bomber in Pakistan.

Belinda Khan died when a blast ripped through a busy market in Mingora, the main city in the mountainous Swat Valley, yesterday.

It is understood she was married to a local man and had been shopping at the time of the attack. Her husband is believed to have been injured in the explosion.

Mrs Khan returned to Britain after her first husband, Yaha Khan, was killed by the Taliban last year, The Guardian reported.

She is thought to have gone back to Pakistan this month to marry his brother, Saeed, according to the paper.

The Foreign Office confirmed that Mrs Khan was one of the victims of the blast.

A spokeswoman said: "We can confirm that a British national was killed in the attack in Swat Valley on February 22. Next of kin have been informed and we are providing consular assistance."

The suicide bomber detonated his device at a road junction surrounded by shops and market stalls as vehicles carrying members of Pakistan's security forces passed. The blast damaged shops and destroyed several cars.

Two soldiers were among the 37 people injured in the attack, a military spokesman said.

Pakistani forces seized the Swat Valley back from local Taliban militants in the middle of last year. But the area, close to the border with Afghanistan, has continued to be plagued by sporadic violence.

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