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NEW DELHI - The Associated PressSix women and a man working for a Pakistani health and education charity involved in vaccinations were shot dead on their way home from a community centre yesterday, officials said.
The attack took place about 65 kilometers northwest of the capital in the Swabi district. The victims were all Pakistanis and worked at a local center called Ujalla, which runs a school and a health clinic. Five of the women were teachers, the sixth was a health worker and the man worked as a health technician, officials said.
They were being driven home from the village community centre when they were attacked, said Abdul Rashid Khan, Swabi police chief. “Six women and a man have died. The driver is injured,” he added. Police said they were investigating whether there was any link to the Taliban or other Islamist militants, who have been blamed for past attacks on charity workers and on health education projects in particular.
The Taliban banned polio vaccinations in the tribal region of Waziristan, condemning the campaign as a cover for espionage after the jailing of a doctor who helped the CIA find Osama bin Laden using a hepatitis vaccination program.