Suspected Taleban militants have killed 13 people in attacks in southern Afghanistan.

A private security company escorting NATO supply trucks said 10 security guards were killed Thursday in a Taleban ambush. The head of the security detail, Mohammad Naim, said the convoy was attacked on the main highway that runs through Zabul province.

In Helmand province, a provincial police chief narrowly escaped an attack when a roadside bomb hit his convoy in the town of Gereshk Thursday. At least three civilians were killed and more than a dozen others wounded.

Provincial police chief Mohammed Hussein called the Taleban militants "terrorists" who target innocent Afghan civilians.

On Wednesday, a militant attack in the same region killed two Canadian soldiers and injured a journalist.

The deaths bring to 69 the number of Canadian soldiers killed since the NATO-led operation in Afghanistan began in 2002.

Helmand is largely controlled by the Taleban and is Afghanistan's biggest producer of opium poppies.

The province is at the center of the Taleban insurgency that Afghan and NATO troops have been fighting since the extremist group was driven from power in 2001.

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