Tag Archives: Afghan

Counting under way in Afghan poll marred by deadly violence, chaos

Counting under way in Afghan poll marred by deadly violence, chaosAfghan election workers began counting votes on Saturday following a partial legislative ballot tarnished by scores of deadly militant attacks, technical glitches and administrative chaos. Nearly 170 people — civilians and security forces — were killed or wounded in election-related violence, official figures showed, and there are fears of more bloodshed when voting resumes Sunday in 401 polling centres. “Inevitable” problems with biometric verification devices, which were introduced at the eleventh hour, as well as missing voter registration lists and lack of staffing delayed or even prevented voting at those polling sites, the Independent Election Commission (IEC) told reporters.



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Long queues as Afghan voters defy election day attacks, delays

Long queues as Afghan voters defy election day attacks, delaysA suicide bomber killed 15 people in Kabul, the most serious of a series of smaller-scale attacks that caused dozens of casualties across the country but did not deter voters who endured long queues to cast their ballot. “Today the people gave an unanswerable response to the enemies of Afghanistan,” government spokesman Haroon Chakansuri told reporters. Voting should have been over by the time the suicide bomber struck a polling station in the north of Kabul, killing 10 civilians and five police, but polling stations were kept open longer than normal to cope with large numbers of people who had been unable to cast ballots.



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Key Afghan police chief killed in shooting at governor's compound after meeting with US general

Key Afghan police chief killed in shooting at governor's compound after meeting with US generalA powerful Afghan police general has been assassinated in an insider attack, robbing president Ashraf Ghani of a key security official and threatening his fragile grip on southern Afghanistan. Gen Abdul Razik was shot dead alongside the Kandahar spy chief and provincial governor shortly after a meeting with the top US military commander in the country. The Taliban said they were behind the attack which saw one of the provincial governor's bodyguards open fire after a meeting with Gen Scott Miller, the top Nato and US commander in Afghanistan. Gen Miller was unhurt, but two Americans were wounded. The assassination dealt a severe blow to Mr Ghani's security forces less than 48 hours before he attempts to hold nationwide parliamentary elections against a backdrop of brutal insurgent violence. Gen Raziq had been the most powerful government figure in southern Afghanistan for much of the past decade, where as Kandahar police chief he had been an aggressive opponent of the Taliban. A NATO helicopter lands at the Resolute Support headquarters in Kabul, Afghanistan Credit: MOHAMMAD ISMAIL/REUTERS His young age and boyish looks belied a ruthless commander and he was accused of systematic torture, extrajudicial killings, and enforced disappearances. He denied the accusations. However Western commanders considered him a bulwark against the encroaching Taliban and one of their most effective partners as he brought a measure of stability to Afghanistan's second city. He estimated he had survived dozens of assassination attempts. The Taliban named the attacker as Abu Dujana and said: “The brutal police chief of Kandahar has been killed along several other officials.” Said Jan Khakrezwal, the head of the provincial council, told Reuters: "Provincial officials including the governor, the police chief and other officials were accompanying the foreign guests to the plane when the gunshots happened." The shooting wiped out the top of Kandahar's security apparatus at a stroke, also killing the province's intelligence chief Abdul Mohmin and provincial governor Zalmay Wesa. The killings came only a day after a prominent politician, Abdul Jabar Qahraman, became the tenth election candidate to die ahead of Saturday's polls when a Taliban bomb was hidden under his chair. Graeme Smith, a former UN political analyst in Kabul said: “The incident will make the military balance in southern Afghanistan considerably more fragile, as Raziq was often at the forefront of government efforts to slow the Taliban’s advances.” Saturday will see Afghanistan's only third parliamentary election since the Taliban were ousted. The insurgents have vowed to disrupt what they call a bogus poll.



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Afghan 'torturer in chief' killed in Taliban attack

Afghan 'torturer in chief' killed in Taliban attackGeneral Abdul Raziq once boasted he had survived “countless” Taliban attempts to kill him. The controversial Kandahar police chief, described by Human Rights Watch last year as the southern province’s “torturer in chief”, had risen through the ranks to become one of the most powerful security heads in Afghanistan. Widely seen as a bulwark against the Taliban insurgency, Raziq’s death has left a dangerous security vacuum that one observer said could lead to a “meltdown” in the south, the Taliban movement’s birthplace.



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Taliban attack Afghan army base, killing 17 soldiers

Taliban attack Afghan army base, killing 17 soldiersKABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Taliban have attacked an army base in western Afghanistan, killing 17 Afghan soldiers and abducting 11 others, officials said Sunday.



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Afghan Taliban announces death of Haqqani network leader

Afghan Taliban announces death of Haqqani network leaderThe founder of the Haqqani network, one of Afghanistan’s most effective and feared militant groups, has died after a long illness, their allies the Afghan Taliban announced Tuesday. Jalaluddin Haqqani, whose son Sirajuddin Haqqani now heads the brutal group and is also the Taliban’s deputy leader, died “after a long battle with illness”, the Taliban said in a statement. Jalaluddin “was from among the great distinguished Jihadi personalities of this era,” the Taliban said in the English version of its statement posted on Twitter.



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Afghan teen to appear in court for Amsterdam station attack

Afghan teen to appear in court for Amsterdam station attackA 19-year-old Afghan man who was shot and wounded by Dutch police after allegedly attacking bystanders at Amsterdam’s Central Station will briefly appear in court on Monday, police said. The suspect, identified by authorities as “Jawed S.”, “will appear before a judge and until then no further details will be released,” the Amsterdam police said in a statement on Sunday. Two American citizens — both believed to be male — were seriously injured when a knife-wielding man attacked bystanders around noon on Friday at the busy station next to the Dutch capital’s historic city centre.



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Taliban launch attacks on approaches to Afghan city of Ghazni

Taliban launch attacks on approaches to Afghan city of GhazniThe Taliban raided three villages on the outskirts of Ghazni late on Thursday, destroying some newly built checkpoints and cutting off power to some parts of the city. Provincial police chief Farid Mashal said government forces counter-attacked to block the insurgents from approaching the city. “We were swift to push the Taliban out of the villages, but many civilians fled to neighboring villages fearing the fighters could kill them,” said Mashal.



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Aid arrives in Afghan city after Taliban onslaught

Aid arrives in Afghan city after Taliban onslaughtAid trickled into Ghazni Sunday, residents and relief workers said, days after security forces pushed Taliban militants from the eastern Afghan city following nearly a week of heavy fighting. “We need this aid to survive,” said Gul Badshah, one of many in Ghazni who made their way to distribution centres Sunday, who said his home had been destroyed by two rockets during the onslaught. Siraj Ahmad, another resident, said he was collecting aid for a neighbour whose husband — a police officer — and young son were killed by the Taliban during the fighting.



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The Afghan President Has Called for a Cease-Fire With the Taliban During Eid al-Adha

The Afghan President Has Called for a Cease-Fire With the Taliban During Eid al-AdhaThe Taliban did not immediately respond to the announcement



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