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Insurgents behead 17 civilians in southern Afghanistan: officials

August 27, 2012

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Taliban fighters in Afghanistan. — Photo by AP

KANDAHAR: Taliban insurgents beheaded 17 Afghan civilians for taking part in a music event in a Taliban-controlled area of southern Afghanistan, Afghan officials said.

The Interior Ministry said the attack happened Sunday in Helmand province and that gunfire was also involved.

Helmand provincial government spokesman Daoud Ahmadi said the attack happened in Musa Qala district.

Ahmadi said all of the victims had their heads chopped off. He said it was not clear if they were shot first.

The Musa Qala government chief said the people had gathered for a celebration and were playing music and dancing and the insurgents wanted to stop the event.

Neyamatullah Khan said the area where the slaughter took place is completely in Taliban control and so he does not have more details yet.