Five US service members were killed today by a roadside bomb in southern Afghanistan, the latest deadly attack against international troops since the Taliban announced the start of their spring offensive this week. NATO did not disclose the location of the blast, but a spokesman for the governor of Kandahar province said it took place in the province's Maiwand district, the spiritual birthplace of the Taliban. With the deaths, 47 members of the US-led coalition have been killed so far this year, including 32 Americans.
The renewed violence came as Afghan President Hamid Karzai acknowledged that his government has been receiving funds from CIA for more than a decade as part of regular monthly assistance from the US government. Karzai told reporters at a news conference that the CIA's station chief in Kabul has assured him that the money will not be cut off.