The Taliban claimed responsibility for the suicide bombing, which came only a day after the US announced it was sending more troops to Afghanistan.
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A suicide bomber in a southern Afghanistan bathhouse killed at least 17 and wounded 23 on Friday, while roadside bombs killed three NATO troops. The attacks come just a day after reports that the US will send an additional 1,400 marines to the country, largely to its south, in anticipation of an uptick in fighting as snow melts and militants emerge from winter hideouts.
The bathhouse bombing seemed to target an Afghan police commander who was known to stop there before Friday prayers in the southern town of Spin Boldak, near the border with Pakistan (see map here), an Afghan intelligence source told the BBC. Spin Boldak is only 70 miles from the provincial capital of Kandahar, a stronghold for the Taliban, which claimed responsibility for the attack, The New York Times reports
“This brutal and inhumane act was the work of the enemies of Islam and humanity,” said Zalmai Ayoubi, a spokesman for the governor of Kandahar, according to Reuters. He added that the other casualties were all civilians.