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Afghan suicide attack kills 1 outside CIA base

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[May 03, 2010]  KABUL (AP) -- A suicide attack killed one civilian Monday outside a CIA base in eastern Afghanistan where the agency suffered one of the worst attacks in its history in December, an Afghan official said.

HardwareTwo security guards were wounded in the blast outside Camp Chapman in Khost province, said Mubarez Zadran, a spokesman for the provincial governor. A suicide blast inside the base five months ago killed eight people.

The suicide bomber in Monday's attack was in a vehicle packed with explosives, the Afghan Interior Ministry said in a statement. The victims were all Afghans, the ministry said.

U.S. Army Maj. Justin Platt, spokesman for the 3rd Brigade Combat Team at nearby Salerno Camp, said the bomber blew himself up in an area where vehicles are screened before entering the camp.

"The explosion was very strong and thick smoke covered the sky afterward," said Wali Mohammad, 17, who was working at a construction site nearby.

The Taliban claimed responsibility soon after the attack.

In December, seven CIA employees and a Jordanian intelligence officer were killed when a suicide bomber detonated his cache of explosives at Camp Chapman.

The CIA had cultivated the bomber -- a Jordanian doctor identified as Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi -- in hopes of obtaining information about al-Qaida's second in command. Al-Balawi turned out to be a double-agent.

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Also Monday, a rocket attack on a school in Ghazni wounded a teacher and three students, the Interior Ministry said.

In Kunar province on Sunday, NATO said insurgents attacked one of its forward operating bases. One NATO servicemember was wounded and two barracks were damaged. NATO said civilian casualties were reported following the fighting, but did not provide details. NATO and Afghan authorities were investigating.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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