Well-Known Afghan Commander Among 20 Dead In Blast

By: AP
By: AP

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Afghan authorities say a suicide attacker blew himself up in a wedding hall in northern Afghanistan, killing more than 20 people, including Ahmad Khan Samangani, a well-known commander in northern Afghanistan who was also a member of parliament.

Ghulam Mohammad Khan, the criminal director of the provincial police, says more than 20 people were killed in the Saturday morning blast in Aybak, the capital of Samangan province.

He says other government officials also were killed in the blast and that more than 40 others were wounded.

Conflict between the Taliban -- who are mostly Pashtun -- and members of other ethnic groups is nothing new. However, the Afghan government needs minority groups -- loosely known as the Northern Alliance -- to back his efforts to reconcile with the Taliban.

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