Bomb blast kills 20 Afghan civilians
A landmine explosion has struck a bus in Afghanistan, killing at least 20 civilians, including women and children, police say, Press TV reported.
The incident happened in the remote southwestern province of Nimroz on Thursday.
"An IED (improvised explosive device) struck a bus, 20 civilians were killed," police official Haji Mosa Rasooli was quoted as saying by AFP.
The blast took place at around 4:00 p.m. local time (1130 GMT) in the region's Khash Rod district on the main highway linking Nimroz to Kandahar.
In another roadside blast in southern Afghanistan on Thursday, a father, a mother and their four children were killed, provincial spokesman Daud Ahmadi said.
They were travelling to Lashkar Gah, the main town in Helmand province, when they were killed.
"Four children, one female, and one male were killed in the sedan car," Ahmadi noted.
Civilians are the biggest casualties in the near 10-year war in Afghanistan, where 150,000 US-led foreign forces are stationed.
The United Nations says Afghan civilian deaths in the conflict increased 15 percent last year.
The UN also said this month that the number of incidents in Afghanistan between March and June of 2011 was 51 percent higher than during the same period last year.