Suicide strike targets Pakistani army, killing 27

A suicide car bomber attacked an army convoy at a checkpoint in northwest Pakistan, killing at least 27 people near another emerging militant stronghold within striking distance of the Afghan border. A deputy of Pakistan's top Taliban leader took responsibility for Saturday's bombing near the town of Hangu and said more would follow until the US ends missile attacks into Pakistan's tribal areas. Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani condemned the assault as a "cowardly act of terrorism" and said the pro-Western government would use an "iron hand" against terrorists and extremists. While militant attacks are spreading across Pakistan, the onslaught remains fiercest near the Afghan frontier, where al-Qaida fugitives - possibly including Osama bin Laden - have found sanctuary.