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At Least 7 Killed in Eastern Afghanistan Attacks


A series of explosions and gunbattles in eastern Afghanistan has killed at least seven people, including two NATO soldiers.

NATO officials released a statement Wednesday saying two International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops and one civilian were killed by a blast during a routine patrol in the province of Khost near the Pakistani border. Another two soldiers were wounded.

NATO did not release the soldiers' nationalities, but the majority of foreign troops in Khost are from the United States.

Earlier in the day, a roadside bomb struck a police vehicle in Khost, killing two police officers on their way to work.

Also in Khost, officials say a vehicle filled with explosives detonated, killing at least one person. Police say the vehicle was to be used in a suicide bombing, but the blast was premature.

In the eastern province of Laghman, a provincial government spokesman, Wakil Attak said Wednesday poppy farmers attacked policemen, killing one and wounding at least four others.

Afghanistan produces more than 90 percent of the global supply of opium. Officials say profits from the drug trade help to fund the insurgency.

Militants are active in the country's east, where they use porous borders with Pakistan to move men and equipment into Afghanistan.

The United States contends that Taliban fighters are using Pakistan's tribal region as a safe haven from which to launch attacks into Afghan and Pakistani territory.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.

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