Bombers kill 18 in Afghanistan


The attacks brought to 30 the number of people killed since Karzai was sworn in for another five years yesterday, pledging to try to bring peace to the nation and take over security from foreign forces in five years.

A suicide bomber on a motorcycle struck the capital of the southwestern province of Farah, killing 15 people, while a roadside bomb killed three civilians in the east.

The Taliban-led insurgency against the Western-backed government is at its deadliest in the eight years since US-led troops ousted their regime and is slowly encroaching into once peaceful parts of the north and west.

The suicide bomber attacked near the home of Farah's provincial governor, damaging nearby buildings in an area where heavy trucks were being loaded with goods bound for Herat, officials said.

"The bomber riding on a motorcycle detonated himself at a main square near my working office in my home," provincial governor Rohul Amin Amin said.

"Fifteen people have been killed," the governor said, updating an earlier toll of 12. Apart from a police officer, the dead were civilians, Amin added.

About 34 other people, mostly civilians, were wounded, officials said. More than a dozen of the wounded were in "critical condition," meaning the death toll could rise further, the governor said.

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