At least 35 people, including 17 civilians and a Nato-led soldier, have been killed in Afghanistan today.
The country’s interior ministry announced that 17 civilian road-workers were killed when Taliban rebels attacked them in the southern region of Zabul.
Ministry spokesman Zemarai Bashary told the AFP news agency: “The enemies attacked civilian road-workers in Zabul this morning. 17 civilian road-workers were martyred and 16 others were injured.”
A retaliatory attack by Afghan and foreign security forces resulted in seven militants being killed, Mr Bashary claimed.
“After the incident, the [Afghan] national army, police and international forces went to the area and chased the enemies away, killing seven enemies and wounding 12 others,” he said.
Today’s attacks are the latest in a series by Taliban insurgents aimed at civilians working with international forces and the Afghanistan government.
Also today, a Nato-led solider was killed and another injured in an explosion in the Ghazni province.
The death means 38 foreign soldiers have now been killed in Afghanistan this year.