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Two separate suicide bombings kill 18 in Afghanistan

Both attacks took place outside government offices including a police station in Musa Qala.

Afghan victims of the suicide attack are transported in the back of a police truck in Guzara, Herat province earlier today.
Afghan victims of the suicide attack are transported in the back of a police truck in Guzara, Herat province earlier today.
Image: AP Photo/Hoshang Hashimi

TWO SEPARATE SUICIDE bombings outside government offices in Afghanistan have left at least 18 dead including eight policemen.

In the first blast earlier this morning, a suicide bomber blew up a four-wheel drive during rush hour traffic outside government buildings in Herat province in western Afghanistan.

At least 1o people died and more than 20 others were injured, local authorities said. Two men and a woman were found dead inside the vehicle that exploded at the gate of the district headquarters building as people lined-up to go inside.

In the second incident, three suicide bombers attempted to enter a police office in Musa Qala but were spotted by police who shot one before the two others blew themselves up, according to a spokesman in southern Helmand province.

Eight policemen were killed in the blast and several others were injured, including the district police commander.

In contrast to Helmand, Herat province and much of the western Afghanistan  is perceived to be  relatively calm as insurgents have concentrated their attacks in the country’s south and east.

The responsibility for nearly all of the province has been transferred from NATO troops to Afghan forces ahead of a planned withdrawal in 2014.

- with reporting from Associated Press

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Hugh O'Connell

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