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Violence Flares Ahead Of Afghan Vote

17 September 2005 -- Afghanistan's Interior Ministry today said that suspected Taliban rebels killed three policemen, including a district police chief, in an ambush ahead of key parliamentary elections.

Interior Ministry spokesman Lutfullah Mashal said gunmen from the ousted Taliban regime, which has vowed to disrupt Sunday's landmark vote, ambushed the police chief of Kabul's Musayi district as he was on patrol late last night.

Mashal said the Musayi police chief and two policemen were killed and two other police were wounded in the attack.

Taliban Gunmen Killed
In another incident late last night, two suspected Taliban gunmen were killed in a firefight that broke out after they attacked highway police in the troubled southeastern province of Zabul, Mashal said.

Also yesterday, suspected Taliban ambushed a police patrol in southern Afghanistan's Kandahar Province.

Gulam Rasool, a local government official, said seven Taliban rebels were killed in the ensuing battle. No policeman was killed or wounded.

In neighboring Pakistan, thousands of troops have been put on alert near the Afghan border.


For more on the Afghan elections, see RFE/RL Afghanistan Votes page.