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23 Police Officers, Afghan Soldiers Killed in Attacks

Afghan authorities say 23 policemen and security officials have been killed during attacks across the country in recent days.

In Helmand province, a local police chief says two police officers were killed Monday when a roadside bomb exploded in the Musa Qala district.

Interior Ministry officials say 16 policemen were killed Saturday in the southern province of Kandahar when their post was attacked by Taliban rebels.

Also, the Defense Ministry says five Afghan soldiers were killed in landmine attacks Friday in Uruzgan and Paktia provinces.

Violence in Afghanistan this year has been the deadliest since the ouster of the Taliban in 2001. More than 6,000 people have died in the insurgency this year.

Spanish King Juan Carlos made an unannounced visit to Afghanistan Monday. The monarch traveled to the western city of Herat to meet with some of the country's nearly 700 troops based there as part of an international peacekeeping operation - the International Security Assistance Force.

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