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Bombs, clashes kill six in Afghanistan

Bombs exploded in Afghanistan's two main cities today, killing one man and wounding at least a dozen people, authorities said.

world Updated: Mar 15, 2009 16:27 IST

Bombs exploded in Afghanistan's two main cities on Sunday, killing one man and wounding at least a dozen people, authorities said.

The deaths came after a British and a French soldier died in insurgent attacks on Saturday and amid growing international concern about extremist violence in Afghanistan and across the border in Pakistan.

The first bomb, which may have been planted in a road, exploded in the southern city of Kandahar as the vehicle of the city mayor was passing, police said.

Mayor Ghulam Haidar Hameedi survived the attack, deputy police chief Abdullah Khan told AFP.

"One civilian was killed and six others were wounded but there was no harm to the mayor except his vehicle was damaged a bit," Khan said.

Hours later another bomb exploded in the capital, Kabul, wounding up to a dozen people, officials said.

"Our initial reports says it was a suicide bomb attack carried out by a man on foot. We are aware of five civilians wounded," the interior ministry said.

However, the government ambulance service said up to a dozen were hurt. The explosion was outside a school, an AFP reporter said.

There were no claims of responsibility for the attacks but similar ones have been carried out by the insurgent Taliban movement, which was in government between 1996 and 2001.

The US military, which is propping up the Western-backed Afghan government, said meanwhile that soldiers killed five militants in an operation early on Sunday about 60 kilometres (37 miles) west of Kandahar city.

Three others were detained, it said in a statement.

It was not immediately possible to confirm independently that the men were militants.

The US military is investigating allegations from locals that five men killed in the eastern province of Logar on Saturday were a civilian father and four of his sons.

The Afghan government has repeatedly expressed anger over civilian deaths during foreign military operations, mounted to try to defeat an insurgency led by remnants of the Taliban regime ousted in the 2001 US-led invasion.

The deaths of the two foreign soldiers - who were serving in NATO's International Security Assistance Force that works alongside the US military - took to 56 the number of international troops to die in Afghanistan this year.