Wednesday, May 31, 2017

AP Explains: Why can’t the Afghan government protect Kabul? - Associated Press

A massive suicide truck bombing rocked a highly secured diplomatic area of Kabul, killing 90 people and wounding as many as 400. The attack left a scene of mayhem and destruction in the Afghan capital.

A look at some of the lingering issues after Wednesday’s attack:

Investigators will seek to understand how insurgents managed to get an explosives-packed tanker truck into one of the best-protected areas of Kabul. The Wazir Akbar Khan district is home to most of the capital’s foreign embassies as well as several major government institutions, including the Presidential Palace.

“No one could even imagine that would take place in Wazir Akbar Khan,” said Gen. Mirza Mohammad Yarmand, a former deputy interior minister. “I would call it a security and intelligence error.”

The bombing raises serious questions about the Afghan government’s ability to provide basic security. Insurgent groups have been on the offensive ever since the drawdown of NATO troops from the country in 2014.

The first half of 2017 has seen a particularly successful string of terrorist attacks in the capital, including a twin suicide bombing March 1 that killed 22 people and a coordinated March 8 assault on a military hospital that killed 50 people.

As of late Wednesday night in Kabul, no one had claimed responsibility. The vast majority of such devastating attacks recently have been undertaken by either the Taliban or the local affiliate of Islamic State group.

Yarmand said he didn’t believe the Taliban were behind it, saying they “don’t have the ability to carry out such big attack, and if they did, they would have claimed responsibility.”

The former Interior Ministry official repeated a common belief among Afghan government officials that the Pakistani intelligence services have played a role in the string of terrorist attacks plaguing Kabul. Pakistani officials have repeatedly denied such accusations. - Read More

AP Explains: Why can't the Afghan government protect Kabul? - The ...


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