News / Asia

Suicide Bomber Kills 9 in Afghanistan

Afghan officials say a teenage suicide bomber has killed at least nine people in a crowded bazaar in the remote northwestern province of Faryab.

Officials say Friday's attack targeted the leader of a local council, Rahmatollah Turkistani.  He was wounded in the blast, along with at least 30 other people.

Police say the teenage boy walked towards Turkistani and detonated his explosives.

The attack was condemned by Afghan President Hamid Karzai and NATO-led coalition forces.  

In a Friday statement, a spokesman for NATO-led coalition forces, the ISAF Public Affairs Director, Rear Admiral Vic Beck, said the bombing shows the "malicious contempt" that insurgents have for people. The statement also says insurgents were responsible for at least 103 Afghan civilian deaths and more than 200 injuries in the month of October alone.

In other violence, NATO says separate attacks killed three of its service members in Afghanistan on Friday.

Two coalition soldiers were killed in the south, one by a bomb, the other in an insurgent attack.  A third service member was killed in a bomb attack in the country's east.

This year has been the deadliest for foreign forces in Afghanistan since the start of the nine-year war.  More than 615 NATO soldiers have been killed since January 1.

NATO also said Friday that a coalition air strike killed a senior leader of the al-Qaida-linked Haqqani network and several other insurgents Wednesday in the eastern province of Khost.

Also, coalition forces said Friday they had confirmed the death of a Taliban leader, Haji Malang.  Military officials say Malang and a second unidentified suspect, described as an armed insurgent, were killed Tuesday in Helmand province after they threatened security force members as they exited a building.

Officials say Malang had planned and carried out small arms and improvised explosives attacks against Afghan and coalition forces.

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

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