Afghan authorities say Taleban insurgents have killed at least 30 civilians - all members of the same family. The attacks come as U.S. led forces continue a massive operation against the Taleban in its traditional stronghold in the south.
Afghan officials say Taleban militants targeted a former district chief in Helmand province, Jama Gul, and his family.
The first attack killed Gul and four of his bodyguards. Several hours later, when his family came to collect his body, local police say the Taleban struck a second time.
The U.N.'s senior spokesman in Afghanistan, Aleem Siddique, denounced such attacks. "We condemn any such violence against innocent civilians,” said Siddique, “and we offer our condolences to the friends and families of those that were killed our injured."
A U.S. led coalition of more than 10,000 troops is currently sweeping through Helmand and three other southern provinces targeting Taleban insurgents.
It is the largest military offensive since 2001 and follows a significant spike in Taleban attacks throughout the region.