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Suicide bomber detonates truck outside Afghan and NATO base

October 17, 2012 |  1:08 pm

Afghan police
KABUL, Afghanistan -- A suicide bomber detonated a truck at the entrance of a shared Afghan and NATO base in eastern Afghanistan, wounding several local and international troops, officials said.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the Wednesday attack. At least 10 Afghan forces were wounded, said a police spokesman in the Zurmat district of eastern Paktia province.  

A NATO force spokesperson, U.S. Army Major Martyn Crighton, confirmed that the wounded included international troops but declined to provide further details. He said the explosion was followed by incoming rocket or mortar fire.  

A statement by the Taliban said the attack occured at 7 a.m. and destroyed two helicopters and surveillance equipment and caused dozens of casualties.

The attack follows a suicide bombing Saturday at an intelligence office in Kandahar province that killed a CIA agent and a senior Afghan intelligence official.  The beginning of October saw a suicide bomb attack on an Afghan base in Khost, killing 20 people including three U.S. soldiers; and in  September,  fighters stormed the main NATO base in Helmand province, killing two U.S. Marines and destroying six Harrier jets.

The Taliban and its allies have started targeting the Afghan soldiers and police that the United States is counting on to secure the country as international forces withdraw by the end of 2014.


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Photo: Afghan policemen stand guard at a checkpoint in Ghazni following a suicide bomb attack targeting a military base in Zurmat district in neighboring Paktia province, on Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2012. Credit: Naweed Haqjoo / European Pressphoto Agency