Taliban said to have killed dozens on a bus in Afghanistan
The New York Times reports Sunday that Taliban militants stopped a bus traveling through a dangerous part of south Afghanistan seized about 50 people on board and killed around 30 of them.
A spokesperson for the Taliban took responsibility for the attack but claimed to have killed 27 Afghan army soldiers. Afghan officials said all of the victims on board were civilians, not soldiers.
The article says that, police chief Matiullah Khan said that, "Militants stopped the bus traveling in a two-bus convoy in a Taliban-controlled area about 40 miles west of Kandahar."
He also said that the two buses had been traveling together, and the militants had tried to stop the first one but failed. He said the first bus was fired at by insurgents, killing a child on board.
The death toll of the attack is varying, which may explain why the news on the killings did not emerge until Sunday.
The article goes on to say that, "Khan said authorities had arrested four Taliban commanders in connection with the attack."
Also, there was no way to independently verify the number of victims, which had come from northern Afghanistan and were between 20 and 25 years old.
''The Taliban want to hide the news that they arrested and killed innocent Afghan civilians,'' Khan said, dismissing their claim the victims were soldiers.
It is also mentioned that Taliban attacks have become increasingly lethal this year, as the militia has gained power and surged throughout southern and eastern Afghanistan.