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Jul 25, 5:13 AM EDT

Taliban kill 14 Shiites in Afghanistan road attack

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KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) -- Taliban insurgents halted minibuses in western Afghanistan, identified 14 Shiite passengers and shot them dead by the side of the road overnight Friday, an official said.

The busses were traveling from Kabul and carrying around 30 passengers, many of whom had gone to the capital to shop ahead of the holiday marking the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, said Sayed Anwar Rahmati, the governor of the western Ghor province, where the attack took place.

After questioning the passengers, the Islamic militants identified 14, including three women, as Hazara Shiites. The insurgents then bound the passengers' hands, led them away and shot them, Rahmati said, adding that the other passengers were released. The dead included a couple who were engaged and two relatives travelling with them, he said.

The Taliban, like other Sunni extremist groups, view the country's minority Shiite community as apostates, and have targeted Hazaras in the past with suicide bombings and other attacks.

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