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The United States has condemned a bomb attack on a bus in Afghanistan that killed 16 Afghan civilians, including 11 children.

Officials said the bus, carrying people who were returning from a wedding engagement party, was struck by a roadside bomb in western Herat Province on September 27.

Taliban militants are suspected of carrying out the attack.

In a written statement, U.S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland called the bombing a "callous, targeted attack on innocent civilians," and said the perpetrators -- whom she called "terrorists" -- continue to "demonstrate blatant disregard for the lives of innocent Afghans and attempt to undermine the cause of peace."

The U.S. statement expressed confidence that such attacks will not deter the Afghan people from "pursuing a more peaceful, democratic future for their country."

The statement added that the U.S. military and allied forces will continue to "pressure" those who perpetrate such violence.

compiled from agency reports