- Associated Press - Sunday, March 13, 2011

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A roadside bomb killed four Afghan civilians in a car in the country’s south, the government said Sunday.

The victims were driving in Kandahar province’s Shorabak district when their vehicle struck the bomb Saturday, the Interior Ministry said in a statement. The incident is being investigated, the ministry said.

Civilians increasingly have become the victims of insurgent attacks as Taliban militants wage a violent campaign against international and Afghan forces in the south.

A U.N. report issued last week said that civilian deaths jumped 15 percent in 2010 to 2,770. The report blamed insurgents for 75 percent of the combat-related killings — saying they were responsible for 2,080 deaths. Deaths attributed to U.S.-led forces dropped by 26 percent to 440 people despite a large increase in fighting.

Two NATO service members also have been killed this weekend. One died in an insurgent attack in the east, and another died in a bomb attack in the south, the international military coalition said. NATO did not provide further details or identify the nationalities of the dead.

The coalition typically waits for individual nations to identify their casualties. The latest deaths make 13 NATO service members killed so far this month.

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