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10 Afghans killed in suicide attack on market

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Official says bomber was targeting army vehicle but missed and hit market
  • Area was busy due to Afghan new year celebrations
  • Police in Helmand province arrest Taliban militants carrying Iranian-made weapons
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Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) -- Ten Afghan civilians were killed and seven others were wounded in a suicide attack Sunday in southern Afghanistan's Helmand province, a provincial spokesman said.

Dawoud Ahmadi said the attack was targeting an Afghan National Army vehicle, but the bomber missed it and hit a bazaar, or market, in the Gereshk district instead.

He noted that the area is very busy due to Norooz, a two-week holiday that marks the start of spring and the new year for many in Afghanistan, Iran and other countries.

Separately, Ahmadi said police in Helmand arrested five members of the Taliban, who allegedly were carrying Iranian-made weapons.

NATO-led coalition forces are pressing an offensive against the Taliban around the town of Marjah.

Dubbed Operation Moshtarak, the offensive was launched in February by an international coalition of 15,000 troops, including Afghans, Americans, Britons, Canadians, Danes and Estonians.

 
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