Eight Afghan civilians killed by double mine blasts

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (Reuters) – Eight Afghan civilians, three of them children, were killed in two landmine explosions near the border with Pakistan, a senior provincial police official said on Thursday.

In Wednesday’s incident, a vehicle carrying the civilians ran over a mine on a dirt road near Spin Boldak, a town in Kandahar province, Kandahar police chief Sayed Aqa Saqib told Reuters.

“In the first explosion, three civilians lost their lives. The second one went off after the remaining people in the car got out to recover the bodies. In total, eight people were killed and several were wounded,” he said.

Saqib said the mines were planted by Taliban insurgents who largely rely on suicide attacks and roadside bomb blasts in their campaign against the government and foreign troops backing it.

The Taliban could not be contacted immediately for comment.

Afghanistan is strewn with millions of landmines, a legacy of three decades of war, beginning with the invasion by the former Soviet Union.

Landmines and unexploded ordnance kill or maim several dozen people monthly in Afghanistan, according to the United Nations.

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