| GEO World|
| Afghan attacks kill 17 including wedding-goers|
| Updated at: 0043 PST, Friday, August 07, 2009|
KANDAHAR: Afghan violence left 17 people dead including wedding-goers and five US soldiers in new attacks ahead of elections as the NATO chief Thursday visited insurgent hotspots in the south.
A wave of insurgent attacks in Afghanistan has raised fears that violence will mar presidential and provincial council elections on August 20 and damage the credibility of the polls.
A bomb ripped through a trailer taking villagers to a wedding and towed by a farm tractor -- a common mode of transport in rural Afghanistan -- in the southern province of Helmand on Wednesday, authorities said.
Several officials initially said 21 people were killed, including children and women, and five others wounded.
But by evening provincial police chief Assadullah Shairzad had dropped the death toll to five, saying the first information was incorrect.