Afghan men shout anti-US slogans during a protest in Kabul.—Reuters

 KABUL: Anti-US protesters tried to storm a US consulate and march on Nato headquarters in Kabul on Friday as violent demonstrations over the burning of Quran's pushed into a fourth day, killing 23 people.

Afghan officials said five people died Friday, four of them in the usually relatively peaceful western province of Herat and another demonstrator in the northern province of Baghlan, where hundreds took to the streets.

The Quran incident has fanned the flames of anti-Western sentiment already burning over abuses by the US-led foreign troops, such as the release last month of a video showing US Marines urinating on the corpses of dead Afghans.

President Hamid Karzai's government and the US-led Natomission in Afghanistan has appealed for calm and restraint, fearful that Taliban insurgents are trying to exploit the anti-American backlash.

But in Herat city, three people died as protesters surged towards the US consulate while four more were killed elsewhere in the province, provincial spokesman Moheedin Noori told AFP.

“Seven people were killed and 50 others were injured -- mostly in gunfire -- across Herat province,' said Noori.

A security official told AFP that demonstrators had tried to storm the consulate and that some had tried to grab guns from the police.

Another protester was shot dead and two wounded when demonstrators tried to overrun the Czech-led military-civilian provincial reconstruction team in northeastern Baghlan province, provincial governor Abdul Majeed said.

Friday's deaths bring to at least 23 the number of people killed since Tuesday at violent anti-US protests over the burning of Korans at the US airbase of Bagram, north of the capital.

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