Support our mission

KABUL — Five coalition members were killed in a blast in southern Afghanistan Saturday that may have been an attempt to assassinate a provincial governor.

Coalition officials said two civilians workers and three troops were killed in the blast. They did not immediately release the nationalities of those killed. However, The Associated Pressreported they were Americans.

In a separate attack in eastern Afghanistan, a civilian working with the coalition was killed, bringing the days death toll to at least six for the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force.

The attack in southern Afghanistan occurred in Zabul province. A suicide bomber detonated a bomb near a convoy headed to a school opening at 11 a.m. in the center of Qalat, the provincial capital, according to Zabul’s deputy governor, Mohammad Jan Rasulyar. The governor was unhurt but a an Afghan doctor and two of the governor’s bodyguards were injured in the attack, Rasulyar said.

Coalition officials would not confirm details of the attack.

A brief statement from the U.S. Embassy confirmed that there was an attack in Qalat, with American and Afghan casualties. An Embassy official would not say whether any embassy personnel were involved.

The attacks occurred on the day the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Martin Dempsey, arrived in Afghanistan.

Insurgents have stepped up attacks in recent days, including an attack on a courthouse in the western province of Farah Wednesday that left more than 50 people dead and 90 injured, including many civilians. Fighting in Afghanistan traditionally picks up in the spring and summer, as insurgents stream over mountain passes from their winter redoubts in Pakistan. Twitter: @Druzin_Stripes

Stripes in 7

around the web

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign-up to receive a daily email of today’s top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign up