Afghan security officials inspect the scene of a suicide bomb attack that targeted an Afghan Army vehicle in Lashkar Gah, Helmand province, Afghanistan, 11 February 2017.

A car bombing in Lashkargah, the capital of Afghanistan's embattled Helmand province, killed six people on Saturday, including five Afghan army soldiers and a child, a local government official said. 

"Twenty-one others were also wounded in the blast while Afghan army soldiers were gathered to receive their pay in a bank," according to Omar Zwak, a spokesman for the Helmand governor.

Officials in Helmand often play down casualty figures and the severity of such incidents.

Mohammad Karim Atal, head of the Helmand provincial council, had earlier said that eight people were killed and 15 others wounded. 

Afghan chief executive Abdullah Abdullah condemned the attack and offered sympathies to the victims' families. "We honor their pride and sacrifices for peace." 

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing via their spokesman Qari Yosuf Ahmadi, who wrote on Twitter that 39 soldiers and officers had been killed or wounded. 

Helmand is one of the most embattled provinces in southern Afghanistan. Save for the provincial capital, the entire district is either heavily contested or fully controlled by the Taliban. 

Fourteen people, including 10 police officers, were killed and 15 others were wounded in a car bombing in Lashkargah in early October last year.

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