Suicide bomb in car kills eight Pakistani soldiers

A suicide bomber on steered an explosive-laden car into a checkpoint at a paramilitary camp Sunday in Pakistan's restive tribal region near Afghanistan, killing at least eight soldiers.

   The attack took place at Zalai Fort, which is manned by the Frontier Corps (FC) paramilitary forces, in the South Waziristan tribal district. The camp is located 15 kilometres west of Wana, the region's main town.

   'Eight FC personnel died and two sustained injuries in the mighty blast that also caused some damage to the fort,' a security official said on the condition of anonymity.

   The bomber struck the government forces two days after a suspected US strike involving an unmanned aircraft killed at least nine Taliban militants in Doug village in the district.

   The insurgents said they believe US forces target them on information provided by the Pakistani military and intelligence agencies.

   South Waziristan is considered a safe haven for al-Qaeda and Taliban fighters and is also home to Baitullah Mehsud, the top commander of Islamic militants operating in Pakistan.

   More than 100,000 Pakistani troops have been deployed along the porous Afghan border to check militants' cross-border attacks on international forces.

   Western allies in the fight against terrorism in Afghanistan have expressed appreciation of Pakistan's deployment, which has brought down the number of raids, but they continuously press Islamabad to do more to clamp down on Islamic militancy.