Afghan blast claims 17 civilians

Kandahar, July 10:

Seventeen civilians, including children, were killed and about 30 others wounded when a suicide bomber blew himself up near a NATO convoy in southern Afghanistan today, police told AFP.

Seven soldiers with NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) were also wounded in the attack, some of them seriously, ISAF said.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The bomber was on foot and blew himself up as a convoy of ISAF troops passed through a bazaar in the town of Dehrawood in the southern province of Uruzgan, provincial police chief General Mohammad Qasem said.

“There was a suicide bombing. Seventeen people — all of them civilians — have been killed and around 30 others were injured,” he told AFP from the provincial capital Tirin Kot, citing figures provided by police on the ground. Some of the dead were schoolchildren, he said.

“It was a huge explosion,” said a grocer who identified himself as Subhanullah.