Afghan market bomb blast kills seven: Official

Southern Afghanistan is one of the most dangerous parts of the war-torn country frequently wracked by serious violence.

Kandahar: More than six civilians were killed and eight others wounded on Wednesday in a motorcycle bomb blast at a market in southern Afghanistan, officials reported.

The attack happened at a market in Uruzgan province at around 6:30 pm (1930 IST), when local people were shopping in preparation for breaking their fasts during the Islamic holy
month of Ramadan.

Khan Aqa Myahkhel, health director for Uruzgan, said: "In this incident, eight people were brought to the hospital. We got information that seven civilians are dead."

The blast happened in Dihrawud district, which is close to the border with Helmand province. The details were confirmed by the director of the provincial council, Amanullah Hotaki.

Taliban, however, were not immediately contactable for comment on, whether they were behind the latest blast.

Southern Afghanistan is one of the most dangerous parts of the war-torn country and is frequently wracked by serious violence in the near 10-year long insurgency.

Civilians are the biggest casualties in the war in Afghanistan, where around 140,000 foreign forces are stationed.

Last year was the bloodiest yet for civilians, with the United Nations recording 2,777 fatalities.

A total of 1,462 civilians have been killed in the first half of 2011, according to UN figures -- an increase of 15 per cent over the same period last year, with insurgent attacks blaming 80 per cent of fatalities overall.

Limited withdrawals of foreign forces from Afghanistan have already started ahead of a deadline for all international combat troops to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2014.

Bureau Report

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