Two Afghan policemen kidnapped, beheaded

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (AP) -- Two policemen were beheaded and their bodies dumped in a desert after being kidnapped from their homes in the heartland of Afghanistan's opium poppy region, an official said Saturday.
The violence is the latest to hit southern Helmand province since Afghan security forces launched a massive campaign earlier this week to eradicate hundreds of acres of opium poppies, which are used to make heroin.
The two low-ranking policemen were abducted late Friday from their houses on the outskirts of Lashkargah, Helmand's provincial capital, said Ghulam Muhiddin, the provincial administrator. Their decapitated bodies were discovered outside the city Saturday, he said.
He said it was not clear whether the Taliban or drug gangs were behind the murders or why the two men were targeted. Police launched an investigation but no one had been arrested.
In other violence, meanwhile, a roadside bomb hit a police patrol in Helmand's Nad Ali district Saturday, killing a policeman and wounding five others, said Abdul Rahman, the provincial police chief.
Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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