News / Asia

Afghan Presidential Candidate Survives Bomb Attack on Convoy

Afghan policemen investigate the site of a suicide attack in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
Afghan policemen investigate the site of a suicide attack in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
Sharon Behn
— At least six people have been killed after a pair of explosions struck the convoy of Afghan presidential frontrunner Abdullah Abdullah.

At least 22 people were wounded in the blasts, which occurred shortly after Abdullah left a campaign event in Kabul on Friday. Security officials say at least one of the blasts involved a suicide bomber. Abdullah was not injured, but in a televised statement shortly after the attack he said that two of his bodyguards were wounded.

 
Abdullah Abdullah

 
  • Received 45 percent of vote in first round of presidential election on April 5
  • Served as Hamid Karzai's foreign minister
  • Ran for president in 2009
  • Trained as an eye doctor
  • Father is Pashtun, mother is Tajik
According to Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Siddiqui, the attack occurred "in the vicinity of a campaign rally." "The [rally] was over and they were out on the way, they came under the attack by a terrorist, a suicide bomber,” he said.

A second bomb went off near the car, Siddiqui added, saying the explosions left six civilians dead and 22 wounded.

President Hamid Karzai condemned the bombings, for which no one immediately claimed responsibility.

Taliban militants have recently ramped up attacks in an effort to disrupt the upcoming June 14 runoff election. The militant group recently issued a statement vowing more attacks aimed at disrupting the vote, which is taking place because there was no clear winner in the April 5 election.

Abdullah, a former foreign minister who received 45 percent of the vote in April, said he and other political figures traveling with him escaped injury, but that several of his bodyguards were wounded in the attack.

Abdullah, who has a history of opposing the Taliban, lashed out at those behind the attack.

"If they place a bomb somewhere, they are the enemies of the Afghan people," he said. "Those who kill people and create violence and launch rocket attacks, suicide attacks, and kill innocent Afghan people, they do not have a future in this country."
  • Security personnel stand near to site of suicide attack that struck the convoy of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
  • Security personnel investigate the site of a suicide attack that struck the convoy of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
  • An Afghan health worker stands after a suicide attack that struck the convoy of presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
  • An Afghan police officer keeps watch at the site of bomb blasts in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
  • An election poster of Afghan presidential candidate Abdullah Abdullah is pictured on the broken window of a bus damaged during a bomb attack in Kabul, June 6, 2014.
The bombings come just a week before Afghans choose whether Abdullah or former World Bank official Ashraf Ghani will be the next president.

Despite a strong turnout in the first round of voting in April, no candidate won enough votes to be declared the outright winner. President Karzai is constitutionally banned from seeking a third term.

Former Afghan ambassador Omar Samad, speaking from Washington, told VOA there are no legal steps in place in case of the death of a candidate, and an assassination could lead to political chaos.

“If a candidate is targeted and assassinated, then in the Afghan case, it becomes problematic," he said. "Especially under today’s condition when you have a run-off, it could lead to a chaotic ... crisis.”

But Samad added that the positive voter turnout in the first round indicated that Afghans had rejected the Taliban’s policy of violence. He expects an equally strong turnout on June 14.

Some information for this report comes from AP and AFP.

You May Like

Uganda Court Annuls Anti-Gay Law

Court says law was passed in parliament without enough members present for a full quorum More

Multimedia Thailand Makes Efforts to Improve Conditions for Migrant Laborers

In Thailand, its not uncommon for parents to bring their children to work; one company, in-collaboration with other organizations, address safety concerns More

In Indonesia, Jihad Video Raises Concern

Video calls on Indonesians to join Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL 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.
In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborersi
X
Steve Herman
August 01, 2014 6:22 PM
Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborers

Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video Public Raises its Voice on Power Plant Pollution

In the United States, proposed rules to cut pollution from the nation’s 600 coal-fired power plants are generating a heated debate. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, charged with writing and implementing the plan, has already received 300,000 written comments. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, another 1,600 people are lining up this week at EPA headquarters and at satellite offices around the country to give their testimony in person.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

The public in China is welcoming the Communist Party's decision to investigate one of the country's once most powerful politicians, former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Analysts say the move by President Xi Jinping is not only an effort to win more support for the party, but an essential step to furthering much needed economic reforms and removing those who would stand in the way of change. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

AppleAndroid