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19 Dead at Afghan Ammunition Depot; Al-Qaida Link Is Probed - 2002-06-28


A sereis of poweful explosions at a former Taleban munitions depot in southern Afghanistan have left at least 19 people dead and dozens wounded.

Many people are reported missing.

The blasts occurred near the border town of Spin Boldak Thursday night and secondary explosions continued Friday.

Afghan officials said it was not clear what caused the explosions, but the Associated Press quotes a local commander as saying a rocket fired by members of the al-Qaida terrorist group hit the depot.

The wounded were transported to hospitals in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar and the Pakistani border town of Chaman.

After the explosions subsided, rocket-propelled grenades, anti-aircraft rounds and small arms ammunition laid strewn over a wide area of the town.

Afghan travelers arriving in Pakistan said several houses near the depot were destroyed and that more victims could be buried under the rubble.

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