- Afghanistan: Two consecutive attacks leave 50 civilians dead in Afghanistan
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At least 35 civilians invited to a wedding were killed and another 13 were injured after a bombing of Afghan government forces that aimed at a nearby Taliban hideout, two officials from the southern Helmand province reported, adding that the Taliban were using this place, close to the wedding celebration site, to train suicide bombers.
"Thirty-five civilians were killed and 13 injured. These people were attending a wedding near the site of the attack in the Khaksar area of the Musa Qala district," said Attaullah Afghan, a member of the Helmand provincial council. A second member of the provincial council, Abdul Majid Akhundzadah, raised the death toll to 40 people, all civilians.
The Ministry of Defense reported that the insurgents' hiding place, which was also the target of the bombing, had also been used to train foreign citizens to integrate the Taliban ranks.
"As a result of a joint operation in the Musa Qala district of Helmand, 22 members of the Taliban were killed and 14 others arrested," the ministry said in a statement, adding that five Pakistanis and one Bangladeshi citizen were among those arrested.
The Taliban issued a statement that Afghan soldiers backed by US forces carried out a night air strike , followed by ground fighting in the Musa Qala district. In these clashes, several of the wedding guests and 18 members of the Afghan forces lost their lives.
The country is experiencing a wave of attacks less than a week before general elections are held, on September 28, in which President Ashraf Ghani faces 17 other candidates to seek re-election.
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