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Five killed in market blast in Afghanistan

Posted on Jul 24 2014 | IANS

Kabul, July 24 : At least five civilians were killed and 21 others wounded in a bomb attack that took place in a local market in Afghanistan's northern province of Takhar Thursday, a provincial government spokesman said.

"An explosive attached to a motorcycle went off in Khwaja Ghar district bazaar around 10.20 a.m., leaving five civilians killed and 21 others wounded," Xinhua reported citing spokesman Abdul Khalil Haffeez.

The toll could rise as many injured remain in critical conditions, sources said.

The injured were shifted to the district hospital.

An investigation has been launched into the incident, the spokesman said.

The government troops immediately cordoned off the area shortly after the blast in the province.

So far, no group claimed responsibility for the attack.

The authorities blame Taliban militants for such attacks.

The Taliban-led insurgency has been rampant since the militant group launched an annual offensive against the Afghan government forces and nearly 50,000 NATO-led troops stationed in the country in mid-May.

On July 15, some 43 civilians were killed and over 100 others wounded when a suicide bombing hit the Urugu district centre in the country's eastern province of Paktika.

More than 1,560 civilians were killed and nearly 3,290 others wounded in conflicts and Taliban-led attacks in the first six months of 2014, according to official figures released by UN mission in the country.

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