“A Vehicle Borne IED (VBIED) assessed to be targeting the Afghan Government Security Forces prematurely detonated killing the driver and wounded a by-stander in the city of Jalal Abad, Nangarhar Province.” — Source: 3/3 Command Chronology for the Period 01 January to 30 June 2005
One dead in Afghanistan ‘suicide bomb’, Taliban kill four police
by Waheedullah Massoud
KABUL, March 30 (AFP) – A suspected suicide bomb rocked a city in eastern Afghanistan, while an ambush by Taliban militants in the west of the country left four policemen dead, officials said Wednesday.
The blast ripped through a Toyota taxi parked outside the governor’s office in Jalalabad early Wednesday, leaving a man who was in the vehicle “in pieces”, said Abdul Rehman, the police chief of Nangarhar province.
The Taliban attack on the border police happened on Tuesday in the western province of Farah, which is normally relatively free of violence by the ousted fundamentalist militia.
The car bombing came hours before US First Lady Laura Bush was due to arrive on a lightning visit to Kabul. She was expected to stay in the capital and was not going to Jalalabad or Farah.
There has been a recent rise in violence linked to Taliban against Afghan police and soldiers, US-led troops and foreigners, coinciding with the end of Afghanistan’s harshest winter in a decade.
“We can say that the person was a suicide bomber because he was in the car with explosives,” police chief Rehman said after the blast in Jalalabad. The man was carrying an Afghan identity card but authorities were unable to confirm his nationality as “usually foreigners carry out suicide attacks, not Afghans”.
“He has been turned into pieces and the car has been destroyed. Only his face is in one piece. The foreign security forces have taken a sample of his body to check his identity,” Rehman added.
A security official from a foreign non-governmental organization who passed the site minutes after the blast said two civilians were killed. Police were not able to confirm this.
The four Afghan policemen died when their patrol was ambushed by suspected Taliban in Anar Darah district, around 700 kilometers (437 miles) west of Kabul, Farah provincial governor Assadullah Falah told AFP. “Farah border police were ambushed by terrorists as they were in a patrol and four police were martyred on Tuesday,” Falah said.
In a separate incident Tuesday in the same province one suspected Taliban insurgent was killed, another was wounded and four were arrested with eight AK-47 rifles, interior ministry spokesman Lutfullah Mashal said. No group has claimed responsibility for the Farah or Jalalabad attacks. Afghan and foreign forces have been on guard following recent bloodshed.
Officials said Tuesday that six Afghan soldiers were wounded by a roadside bomb in the eastern province of Kunar, while two US soldiers were wounded in an attack in south-central Uruzgan province. A bomb in eastern Kabul on Monday injured a Canadian man travelling in a diplomatic car along with three other people.
Hours before US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice visited Kabul on March 17 militants set off a bomb which killed five people in Kandahar, the birthplace of the Taliban. US-led attacks ousted the Taliban regime in late 2001 when it refused to hand over Osama bin Laden following the September 11 attacks.
Source: Copyright © Agence France-Presse 2005