Page last updated at 09:29 GMT, Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Afghan official killed by gunmen


A senior provincial official in southern Afghanistan has been killed by unidentified gunmen, police say.

Abdul Majeed Babai, head of the information and culture department of Kandahar, was gunned down by men riding a motorcycle as he left home for work.

Officials said it was not clear why Mr Babai had been targeted.

The killing comes as Nato and Afghan forces are engaged in a major offensive against Taliban militants in neighbouring Helmand province.

The deputy police chief of Kandahar told the AFP news agency that Mr Babai had left home to go to his office when the attack took place.

"He was assassinated by unknown gunmen riding past on a motorcycle. We are investigating," Mr Mohammad Shah Farooqi said.

Previous attacks in Kandahar province have been blamed on Taliban insurgents, who have regularly carried out suicide car bombings and other attacks targeting government officials.

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