News / Asia

Taliban Step up Attacks in Afghanistan

Afghans stand at the site of a suicide attack in Emam Saheb district of Kunduz province February 21, 2011
Afghans stand at the site of a suicide attack in Emam Saheb district of Kunduz province February 21, 2011

There is no letup in violence in Afghanistan where a suicide bomber has killed at least 30 people.  Militant attacks have killed around 80 people within the past week.  

Afghan authorities in Kunduz Province say people were lined up at a government office (in Emam Saheb district) to collect their identity cards when a suicide bomber attacked.  The explosion wounded more than 40 people and some of them were said to be in critical condition.

The northern Afghan province and its surrounding areas have seen frequent deadly Taliban attacks in recent months.  A district chief was killed in an attack earlier this month, while late last year the governor of Kunduz was killed along with 19 others while he was visiting his hometown in neighboring Takhar province.

On Saturday, a group of several Taliban suicide bombers stormed a bank in the eastern city Jalalabad, killing up to 40 people.  Most of the victims were security personnel collecting their salaries at the bank.

Meanwhile, NATO and Afghan officials say they have launched investigations into allegations international forces may have mistakenly killed civilians in two separate incidents in the country's east.  The NATO-led force says it deeply regretted the accident that occurred late Sunday in Nangarhar Province.

The incident came a day after Afghan authorities in another eastern province, Kunar, blamed international forces for killing as many as 64 civilians.  Presidential spokesman Waheed Omar told reporters in Kabul a government team is investigating the incident.  

"We hope that in the next couple of days we will have a government report prepared.  But what was said to the media is based on what came from the area.  And our understanding is that the governor of Kunar spoke to the media about it and the police chief spoke about it,” Omar stated. “And so far the accounts that come from Afghans they are all on the same page."

Speaking at a separate news conference, NATO spokesman Brigadier General Josef Blotz said coalition forces have no evidence of civilian casualties in any of the recent operations in Kunar province.  He says international forces have joined the Afghans to investigate the allegations.

"The evidence viewed to date has revealed no evidence of children present at all on the night of February 17th, and adults were assessed to be men due to the fact they were armed and moving in tactical formations," Blotz said.

While commenting on recent deadly attacks across the country, the NATO spokesman said that insurgents are hitting "soft targets" to hurt civilians.  He claimed the trend indicates Taliban insurgents have changed their tactics because security operations have weekend them and they can no longer confront the Afghan and NATO forces.

Traditionally, militant attacks decline in Afghanistan in winter, but it has not been the case this year.  NATO commanders expect a surge in militant violence as Taliban insurgents prepare for their spring offensive.   

You May Like

Is Air Travel Safe?

Aviation expert says despite tragic losses of Malaysian Airlines flights 370 and 17, industry experienced lowest fatality rate in recorded history last year More

Multimedia 100 Days Later, Nigerian Girls Still Held

Activists holding rallies in Nigeria and several other countries to mark 100th day of captivity for more than 200 schoolgirls being held by Boko Haram More

Chocolate Too Bitter? Swap Sugar for Mushrooms

US food technology company develops fermentation process using mushrooms to reduce bitterness in cocoa beans, believes it will cut sugar content in candy More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israeli
X
Carolyn Presutti
July 23, 2014 1:21 AM
The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video US Carriers Suspend Travel to Israel

The United States is prohibiting American carriers from flying to Israel's airport in Tel Aviv for 24 hours, because of rising violence between Israel and Hamas militants. The action was announced on Tuesday, after a rocket fired by Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip landed near the airport. As VOA's Carolyn Presutti tells us, international officials soon may have to determine which combat zones are too dangerous for commercial flights.
Video

Video NASA Focuses on Earth-Like Planets

For decades, looking for life elsewhere in the universe meant listening for signals that could be from distant civilizations. But recent breakthroughs in space technology refocused some of that effort toward finding planets that may harbor life, even in its primitive form. VOA’s George Putic reports on a recent panel discussion at NASA’s headquarters, in Washington.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video US Awards Medal of Honor for Heroics in Bloodiest of Afghan Battles

U.S. combat troops are withdrawing from Afghanistan, on pace to leave the country by the end of this year. But on Monday, U.S. President Barack Obama took time to honor a soldier whose actions while under fire in Afghanistan earned him the Medal of Honor. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.

AppleAndroid