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“Roadside bomb” in Ghazni “kills nine”

April 8, 2013

By Tim Foxley

Summary: a roadside explosion does not mean Taliban attack…

Photos of Afghan maps 006A quick comment only on this breaking story – I have used a few inverted commmas in the title, simply to suggest that caution should be applied before automatically accepting the apparent statement from Afghan officials that this was a roadside bomb – ie a device planted by insurgent groups, as opposed to a piece of unexploded ordnance (UXO), an old mine/grenade/shell/bomb from the Soviet/civil war period or something more recently fired or discarded.  A daily bus service might point to something recently placed, but even daily buses can go “off route” and onto/beyond roadside verges, either through poor driving or negotiating around an obstacles.

My ongoing theme will be that the capacity for Afghan officials to immediately know what has happened with certainty should be challenged, their interest, resources and ability to effectively investigate (cordon the area, interview people, gather evidence) after such blasts is surely minimal and, as ISAF and the international community wind down their infomation gathering resources, the abiity to know what has really happened in a given province/incident is going to reduce each month.  This will be my default caveat for every story like this – I have no intention to blame or exonerate, merely to highlight the problems of information gathering…

BBC News, 8 April 2013: Afghan roadside bomb ‘kills nine’ in Ghazni

At least nine people have been killed and 22 injured after a roadside bomb hit a bus in the Afghan province of Wardak, officials say.  A woman was among the dead and children were also wounded in the blast, which took place in the Saydabad district.  One report says the bus was a daily service between the capital Kabul and Ghazni province.

Wardak is a volatile region used as staging post for a number of large-scale militant attacks on Kabul.

“I helped evacuate several dead and wounded. There were lots of people in the bus. Only a few survived unhurt, others were killed and wounded,” one witness, Mohammad Sarwar, told the AFP news agency by telephone.

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Update:

The Taliban have posted this statement in relation to this report:

Americans and hirelings commit another felony to mask previous crime:

Created on Monday, 08 April 2013 15:20

1-ghAmericans and their internal mercenaries-for-hire destroyed a passenger bus with a roadside bomb, placed in an area inaccessible to Mujahideen due to its close proximity to an enemy check post, in Salar area of Sayedabad district in Maidan Wardag province which left 9 of our countrymen martyred and 24 others wounded while travelling from Kabul to Kandahar. This incident is not something out of the ordinary but for the past decade, every time the foreign and internal enemies face disgrace and national anger, they carry out such unjustifiable explosions and martyr our innocent countrymen just to divert media attention from themselves by placing roadside bombs and targeting civilian vehicles. The said incident was performed only to turn away the general attention from the Kunar massacre therefore the nation should be vigilant of more such enemy tricks.

The Islamic Emirate categorically rejects all accusation of involvement of its Mujahideen in today’s regretful incident in Maidan Wardag, shares in the grief of the victims and prays for Firdaws Jannah for the martyrs and quick recovery for the injured. Similarly, the enemies are also making bigger their criminal cases with such felonies and shall be further targeted with revenge operations, Allah willing.

 

Spokesman of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan

Zabihullah Mujahid

27/05/1434

19/01/1392         09/04/2013

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