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56 die in Afghan violence; bomb targets Afghan gov

A battle in a militant-controlled region of western Afghanistan killed 30 insurgents and nine Afghan soldiers, while a roadside bomb in the country's north wounded an Afghan governor, officials said on Saturday.
AP | By HT Correspondent, Kabul
UPDATED ON MAY 31, 2009 01:19 AM IST

A battle in a militant-controlled region of western Afghanistan killed 30 insurgents and nine Afghan soldiers, while a roadside bomb in the country's north wounded an Afghan governor, officials said on Saturday.

Violence elsewhere in the country killed 17 others, part of a spate of attacks that killed 56 people over all.

The battle in Badghis province began Friday and continued into Saturday. Afghan troops supported by international forces killed 30 militants in the Bala Murghab district, a region where the Afghan government has little control. Nine Afghan soldiers died in the battle, and four "disappeared," the Ministry of Defense said.

The ministry did not elaborate.

The roadside bomb detonated on the main highway in Kunduz province, and shattered glass slightly wounded Gov Mohammad Omar, said his spokesman, Ahmad Sami Yawar. He blamed the "enemies of peace and security," a phrase that commonly refers to militants.

Taliban and other militants often target Afghan officials. Northern Afghanistan was once thought to be a peaceful enclave unaffected by rampant Taliban violence in the country's south and east. But militants have increased attacks in the area in the last two years as the insurgency has spread across the country.

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