Roadside bomb kills Afghan intelligence chief

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JALALABAD, Afghanistan, Oct 30 (Reuters) A roadside bomb today killed an Afghan district intelligence chief, his driver and two bodyguards in eastern Afghanistan, a provincial official said.

Taliban insurgents have increased the number of suicide and roadside bomb attacks in Afghanistan this year after suffering heavy casualties in head-on clashes with Afghan government and Western forces, security analysts say.

''The remote-controlled explosive hit the vehicle carrying the intelligence chief and his two bodyguards in the Qarghayo district of Laghman province this morning,'' said the provincial governor's spokesman Nezamuddin, who has only one name.

All four people in the car were killed, he said.

''We are still investigating the incident and no one has been detained,'' the spokesman said.

Meanwhile a soldier from the US-led coalition was today killed during an operation in the southern province of Kandahar, the US military said in a statement.

Three Taliban insurgents were killed in a large operation by Afghan and NATO-led forces in the south-central province of Uruzgan yesterday, the Afghan Defence Ministry said today.

Some 50 militants were killed or wounded in the same operation on Sunday, the ministry said.

Dutch and Australian troops form the bulk of NATO forces in Uruzgan.

Violence has surged in Afghanistan in the last two years, the bloodiest period since US-led and Afghan forces ousted the Taliban from power in 2001.

REUTERS SG RK1515

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