Gen Bajwa attends funeral prayers of martyred army personnel in Peshawar

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The attack took place Saturday night in an area in the scenic Swat Valley where army officers conduct sporting activities, said an official statement.

Local reports said that the death toll may further increase as several were in critical condition among the injured.

"The soldiers were playing volleyball in the evening outside the military base.when a suicide bomber managed to blow himself up", said a security official who asked not to be identified.

General Bajwa later visited the CMH Hospital in the provincial capital to meet those injured in the incident. A large contingent of security personnel had secured the area after the attack and started an initial investigation into the blast.

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The banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has claimed responsibility for the attack, "The Express Tribune" reported.

Islamic militants ruled the picturesque Swat Valley from 2007 until a massive military operation routed them from the area in 2009. On Friday, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said Pakistan was partly to blame for a wave of recent attacks in Kabul, and that Islamabad was harbouring the Afghan Taliban.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi has strongly condemned the suicide attack, the prime minister's office said. "No cowardly attack can deter us in pursuing our struggle against the menace of terrorism to its logical conclusion", he said.

At least two militants were killed during a search operation in December previous year.

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