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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Suicide bombers kill eleven Afghan Soldiers in Kabul and Kunduz

KABUL, Dec 19 : Taliban fighters intensified pressure on Afghan security forces on Sunday, killing five Afghan army training officers in a suicide attack in Kabul, and attacking an army recruiting center in the northern city of Kunduz.

In the Kabul attack, two insurgents armed with AK-47s and grenades opened fire on a bus carrying the army trainers around 8:10 a.m. One of the attackers ran into the bus and blew himself up, killing five officers and wounding nine others, the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

The attack occurred on the main road between Kabul and the eastern city of Jalalabad, the site of several similar attacks on military convoys and supply trucks on their way to nearby coalition and Afghan military bases.

Afghan National Army units from the 201st Army Corp sealed off the blast site following the attack and shot dead a second attacker in what witnesses said was a 45-minute firefight. The blast on the bus shattered windows in nearby businesses and homes. Afterward, residents gathered around a piece of what police said was the suicide bomber's body that had landed on the median of the busy road. Others sifted through scattered pieces of the wreckage.

Little of the bus remained except the charred structure as it was carted away on a flatbed.

In Kunduz, three suicide bombers on motorcycles stormed the front gate of the Afghan National Army recruitment center in the heart of Kunduz City Sunday around 6 a.m., according to an Army officer at the scene, who asked not to be named because he was not authorized to talk to the media.

The attackers shot and killed the gate guards and a fierce firefight erupted. The attackers made their way into the main courtyard under heavy fire and two of them blew themselves up.

"Three Afghan National Army soldiers and three police have been killed so far and more than seven police and army personnel wounded," General Abdul Rahman Sayed Kheli, the police chief of Kunduz Province, said."This is the initial account; we don't know how many suicide bombers are involved in the attack. The firefight is ongoing. The area is sealed off by police, the Afghan National Army and Americans."

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for both attacks.

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