Bombing kills 48 college hopefuls in Afghanistan

A U.S. Special Operations soldier returns fire while conducting multi-day Afghan-led offensive operations against the Taliban in Mohammad Agha district Logar Province Afghanistan

And in northern Baghlan province, a late Tuesday Taliban assault killed 30 soldiers and police at two checkpoints.

In June, an unprecedented ceasefire marking the end of the Ramadan fasting season was brokenby a auto bomb that struck a gathering of Taliban and Afghan security officials, killing at least 20.

At least 48 people have died after a suicide bomber targeted an education centre in a minority Shia area of western Kabul, in the latest assault in Afghanistan's war-weary capital.

The Afghan military has made significant gains against the Taliban in Ghazni city.

Dilawar Aymaq, a parliamentarian from Baghlan, confirmed the attack, which targeted a military checkpoint and another manned by the local police, militias recruited and paid by the Interior Ministry.

There is still fighting on the outskirts of the city, which lies 150km (90 miles) south of Kabul.

The attack took place in a mostly Shia neighbourhood.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed responsibility for the attack, saying 57 Afghan soldiers had surrendered to the Taliban while 17 others were captured in battle.


"Ghazni City remains under Afghan government control", Lt. Col. Martin O'Donnell, a spokesman for Operation Resolute Support and U.S. Forces Afghanistan, told Military.com on Tuesday.

The Public Health Ministry said 35 wounded had been brought to city hospitals, in addition to the 25 killed, adding to the mounting list of civilian casualties this year.

Elsewhere in Afghanistan, the Taliban attacked a police checkpoint in the southern Zabul province early on Wednesday, killing four policemen, according to the provincial police chief, Mustafa Mayar, who said another three officers were wounded.

The attack came as the situation in the embattled central city of Ghazni eased after the Taliban said they had ordered forces out after five days of fighting that killed and wounded hundreds and left the city a burned-out wreck.

The violence underlined how an emboldened Taliban - which was ousted by American forces after the September 11, 2001, attacks on the US - has been pressing its advantage throughout the country.

In recent months, the Taliban have seized several districts across Afghanistan, staging near-daily attacks on security forces, but they have been unable to capture and hold urban areas. The assault on Ghazni was widely seen as a show of force ahead of possible peace talks with the U.S., which has been at war in Afghanistan for almost 17 years.

An Afghan official says six children were killed when they tinkered with an unexploded rocket shell, causing it to blow up. Zwak said that the victims were girls, aged 10-12, who were gathering firewood.

"The extreme human suffering caused by the fighting in Ghazni highlights the urgent need for the war in Afghanistan to end", the top United Nations official in Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto, said in a statement.

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