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6 Indians among 18 killed in Afghan Taliban attack

world Updated: Jul 11, 2009 09:02 IST

Six Indian nationals were among 18 people killed in a Taliban attack on an Indian construction company in Afghanistan, a Pakistani TV news channel reported.

The Afghan Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack carried out last night in Paktia province in which 20 people were also injured, Dawn News reported late last night.

The channel quoted police in Paktia as saying that six Indian workers and 10 Taliban were killed in the attack.

An unnamed Afghan Taliban spokesman was quoted by the channel as saying that Indian, Afghan and African nationals were among the 18 killed in the assault.

There was no official confirmation of the incident.

The channel aired a video of the attack that it claimed was provided by Taliban. The grainy footage featured several men armed with AK-47s and rocket launchers firing at a target that was not shown. The low-resolution footage also showed an explosion and flames erupting as the men continued firing.

The Taliban spokesman purportedly told the channel that the Indian firm, described as the subsidiary of an American company, was attacked because it was a "centre of anti-Islamic activities". The firm was building a USAID-funded road between Khost and Paktia provinces.

The Taliban also reportedly distributed pamphlets in Gardez, the capital of Paktia province, which warned the militants would carry out more attacks on Indian firms "involved in anti-Islamic activities in Afghanistan and Pakistan," the channel said.