Only two days after a deadly attack on Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel, we're learning that twenty Afghan civilians including women and children were killed when when a landmine exploded under their bus on the highway between Kandahar and the remote southwestern province of Nimroz (pictured above). Only hours earlier, AFP notes, a father, a mother, and their four children were killed in southern Afghanistan when a roadside bomb blew up their car as the family traveled to Lashkar Gah in Helmand province. The BBC adds that the highway is often used by Afghan security forces and NATO troops.
Afghan police are blaming the Taliban, which often plants roadside bombs in volatile regions, for today's attack, according to AFP, but the group hasn't yet claimed responsibility. Why? Perhaps because the Taliban often distances itself from attacks that cause civilian casualties, according to the BBC. "Civilians are the biggest casualties in the near 10-year war in Afghanistan," AFP writes, and insurgents are responsible for many of those deaths. In fact, the U.N. blamed insurgents for more than three-quarters of civilian deaths in Afghanistan last year.