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Suicide, Roadside Bombings Kill 25 Afghan Civilians, Wound 65

by Abdul Haleem, Zhang Jianhua

KABUL, March 28, 2011 (Xinhua) --

Increasing militancy and violent incidents in Afghanistan have once again claimed civilians' life in the conflict-ridden country as over two dozen non-combatants have lost their precious lives since late Sunday, officials confirmed Monday.

In the latest waves of violent incidents, a civilian car stepped over a mine in the southern Helmand province, some 555 km south of Afghan capital Kabul, on Monday leaving a civilian dead and injuring six others including two children, the provincial administration confirmed in a press release.

"The ill-fated civilians were going from Gereshk district to attend a wedding party in Naw Zad district when their vehicle ran over a mine killing a woman on the spot and injuring six others including two children," the press release said.

Civilians often bear the brunt of militancy and conflicts in Afghanistan and according to a UN report released recently, 2,777 civilians had been killed in 2010 while military officials predict more violence in 2011.

According to the press release of the Helmand provincial administration, the bloody incident happened at 10:00 local time ( 0530 GMT).

The press release accused the enemies of peace, a term used against Taliban militants by Afghan officials of organizing the blast, but the outfit has yet to make comment.

About 12 hours earlier on Sunday night a suicide attack in Paktika province, some 100 km south of Afghan capital Kabul, left 24 civilians dead and injured 59 others, Paktika's provincial administration said in a statement released to media.

"A suicide bomber riding an explosive-laden vehicle blew it up in Zahir road Construction Company -- a local firm in Barmal district at 08:20 p.m. local time (1550 GMT) on Sunday and according to latest report 24 employees of the company have lost their lives and 59 others were injured," the statement asserted.

All the victims are Afghans and were involved in building roads in the area, the statement asserted.

Earlier spokesman of the provincial administration Mukhils Afghan confirmed that 10 people were dead and 50 others injured.

The suicide attacker was also killed in the blast, according to Mukhlis Afghan.

Meanwhile, Taliban militants claimed responsibility for the attack.

Zabihullah Mujahid, who claims to speak for the armed outfit in talks with media from an undisclosed location, said the militants targeted a joint base of Afghan and NATO-led forces killing several soldiers.

However, the statement of Paktika's provincial administration rejected the claim, saying all the victims were local workers of the road construction firm and the injured men have been taken to a provincial capital hospital in Sharan city and NATO-led forces medical facilities.

Editor: Mu Xuequan


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