Reporting from Peshawar and Islamabad, Pakistan — A powerful suicide bomb ripped through a packed bakery in the Pakistani military town of Nowshera late Sunday, killing at least 18 people. The attack came just hours after an explosion in nearby Peshawar left six dead.
Scores of people were injured in the two bombings, officials and hospital staff said.
Turk Ali Shah, a police department spokesman in Nowshera, about 25 miles east of Peshawar, said many of the bodies were burned beyond recognition, complicating identification.
Army officers were among the dead, said local officials who requested anonymity, adding that the property belonged to the military.
The attacks came two days after Al Qaeda-linked militant leader Ilyas Kashmiri reportedly was killed by a U.S. drone attack in the Pakistani village of Ghwa Khwa. His followers had vowed retribution attacks, but there was no immediate claim of responsibility in either of Sunday's bombings.
Militants have stepped up attacks on Pakistani military targets lately, including last month's assault on the Mehran naval base in the southern port city of Karachi that left at least 10 security personnel dead.