Suicide Bomber Kills 16 in Southwest Afghanistan བོད་སྐད།

Afghan police say a suicide bomber riding a motorcycle exploded Friday in southwestern Afghanistan, killing at least 16 people - including two children and one police officer - and wounding dozens of others. Meanwhile in eastern Afghanistan, two roadside bombs killed at least four people in separate incidents.

Afghan officials say the suicide bomber targeted a busy area of Farah city, the capital of Farah province.

The provincial governor, Rohullah Amin, tells VOA that the blast occurred near his compound and shattered his office's windows.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but Amin says these incidents are the hallmark of the Taliban insurgency that has strengthened in recent months.

Friday's violence comes a day after Hamid Karzai was sworn in for a second term as president. During his inaugural address, Mr. Karzai encouraged militants who do not have ties with international terrorism to work with his government in reconstructing Afghanistan.

Amin says that while he agrees with President Karzai's offer of peace, it will never work if the attacks do not stop.

"The Taliban who kill the same as like today, I think it will be difficult for the Afghan nation to accept those who are killing Afghan people," he said.

President Karzai also said he will work to transfer the leading role for security from international forces to the Afghan army by the end of his five-year term.

Amin says he believes that could be possible but not without more Afghan security force members.

This year has been the deadliest for international troops in Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban-led government in 2001.