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NATO oil tankers destroyed in N. Afghanistan

(Xinhua)

08:05, July 19, 2012

Smoke rises from burning NATO oil tankers in northern Afghanistan's Samangan province, on July 18, 2012. An unknown blast ripped through a parking lot in Samangan province, 215 km north of capital Kabul on Wednesday, and turned 18 oil tankers to ash, provincial police chief Khalil Andarabi said. (Xinhua/Sahil)

AYBAK, Afghanistan, July 18 (Xinhua) -- An unknown blast ripped through a parking lot in Samangan province 215 km north of capital Kabul on Wednesday turned 18 oil tankers to ash, provincial police chief Khalil Andarabi said.

"The incident took place early today morning at 03:00 a.m. local time leaving 18 oil tankers destroyed," Andarabi told Xinhua.

He neither blamed Taliban nor others for the incident, saying investigation is underway.

Meantime, a driver Khalifa Shir told Xinhua that several tankers and trucks were in parking lots in Rubatak area and drivers were sleeping when two blasts jolted the area.

Several oil tankers were seen burning in flames and fire brigade after hours of fighting was able to extinguish the wild fire and saved some vehicles while 18 oil tankers were turned to ash.

Khalifa Shir whose oil tanker escaped the blast, said that some of the oil tankers were supplying fuel to the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force.

He also said that two drivers were injured in the incident.

The relatively peaceful Samangan province had experienced a bloody suicide bombing in a wedding party early Saturday leaving 17 people dead and injured 43 others.

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