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WORLD IN BRIEF: Attacks hit Kandahar, killing two Afghan civilians

Attacks hit Kandahar, killing two Afghan civilians

KANDAHAR, Afghanistan -- A series of blasts killed at least two civilians and wounded several others Saturday in Afghanistan's main southern city, the scene of several recent deadly attacks on police.

Helicopters patrolled above the city as NATO and Afghan troops were deployed to seal off the attack sites. Ambulances with sirens wailing ferried victims to local hospitals.

Kandahar city has been a target for militants this month. Two explosions killed nine people and wounded two dozen others on Oct. 6. Three blasts just minutes apart killed three Afghan police officers in the city Oct. 5.

Account by Titanic survivor auctioned off for $32,000

LONDON -- A first-person account of the sinking of the Titanic fetched $32,000 Saturday in a British auction.

The affidavit signed by Laura Francatelli, who got away in a lifeboat with her two prominent employers, easily topped its pre-sale estimate of $24,000. It was bought by an anonymous collector from eastern Europe.

The most expensive item in Saturday's sale was a poster of Titanic, which went for $96,000 to an anonymous U.S. collector. Auctioneer Andrew Aldridge of Henry Aldridge & Son said that the highest price ever paid for a poster of the doomed ship.

In Francatelli's affidavit, she spoke of hearing an ''awful rumbling'' as the Titanic sunk in the icy North Atlantic in 1912.

Iran releases American held for two years

WASHINGTON -- Iran on Saturday set free an American businessman jailed in Tehran for more than two years on suspicion on ties to an allegedly violent opposition group.

Reza Taghavi, 71, hadn't been charged with a crime and denied knowingly supporting the organization, known as Tondar.

''He admitted to nothing and he continues to maintain his innocence,'' his lawyer, Pierre Prosper, told The Associated Press in a telephone interview from Tehran after his client's release from Tehran's Evin prison. He's not expected to return to Southern California before the middle of next week.

Iranian officials are ''comfortable that he was in fact used by this organization, and comfortable that he does not pose a threat to them and that he can leave and go back to the United States,'' Prosper said.