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Massive car bomb foiled in western Afghanistan
Updated: 2005-04-25 17:28

Afghan police found and neutralized a car bomb containing almost half a tonne of explosives in western Herat city, officials said, as Taliban militants stepped up attacks across the country.

The bomb was made of rockets, mortar rounds, land mines and dynamite wired together and packed into a Toyota vehicle, Interior Ministry spokesman Lutfullah Mashal told AFP on Monday.

"On Sunday in Herat city a vehicle was stopped because it was suspected of being a car bomb," Mashal said.

"It was almost 400 to 500 kilos (880 to 1,100 pounds) of explosives placed in a Toyota station wagon model 1993 and its Afghan national driver has been arrested as well," he added.

The incident came as another car bomb exploded in a residential area of the capital Kabul on Sunday, and shortly after a Romanian soldier was killed in a landmine blast in southern Kandahar city on Sunday.

The ousted Islamic Taliban regime claimed responsibility for both of those attacks.

After a long lull in violence during Afghanistan's bitterest winter for a decade, there has been a resurgence in attacks by Taliban-led militants over the last month.

The Taliban were toppled by a US-led military campaign more than three years ago but they continue to wage a guerrilla revolt, especially in the country's restive south and southeast.

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