Taliban Destroys 22 NATO Supply Trucks in Bombing

Afghan firefighters spray water on burning NATO supply trucks in Samangan province on Wednesday. (Reuters)

Taliban Destroys 22 NATO Supply Trucks in Bombing

A magnetic bomb placed on a truck exploded and destroyed 21 other trucks transporting supplies and fuel for NATO's U.S.-led occupation of Afghanistan early Wednesday morning, local officials report. Taliban insurgents attacked the convoy in a previously secure northern region, authorities said.

The truck convoy had been parked overnight in the northern Afghan province of Samangan after crossing from Uzbekistan.

The Washington Postreports that Samangan straddles a highway that has been used in recent months as the key overland supply line for foreign forces after Pakistan barred NATO supply convoys from its territory as a protest over the killing of 24 Pakistani troops in a U.S. air attack on two border outposts in November. Although Islamabad has lifted the blockade in recent weeks, foreign troops still rely on the northern Afghan region as a route for supplies from Central Asia.

NATO's International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) spokesman Brigadier General Gunter Katz said insurgent attacks have been increasing.

"Generally, in the past 12 weeks, we have a slight increase, 10 per cent, of insurgent attacks on Afghan security forces and international troops," Katz told a news conference.

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