A suicide auto bombing at a busy roundabout near the entrance to Kabul’s global airport on Monday killed at least five people and wounded 16, officials said.
Wahidullah Mayar, the representative for the Ministry of Public Health, said no less than four bodies had been recuperated.
Following the recent wave of attacks in Kabul that killed at least 56 people, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani claimed on Monday that the “organisers of terrorist attacks and terrorist centres still exist in Pakistan”.
“The last few days have shown that suicide bomber training camps and bomb-producing factories which are killing our people are as active as before in Pakistan”, Ghani told a news conference.
Ghani had telephoned Nawaz to discuss possible resumption of peacetalks between Kabul and the Taliban.
The Afghanistan government too has admitted that it has no control over the Taliban and could only hope that they can bring the group on board to talk peace.
Motmaen said Mullah Mansour had been practically in charge of all organisational matters for five or six years and all commissions, all shadow governors and all senior leaders had been working under his leadership even when Mullah Omar was alive. “The peace talks too are negotiable and it’s impossible to happen if the Taliban commanders on the ground are not a part of it”.
A security official at the scene said the attack appeared to have been aimed at two armoured cars, although it was not clear who was in the vehicles.
The Taliban said two vehicles belonging to foreign coalition forces were the target.
The blast was felt across most of central Kabul. The disclosure, later confirmed by the Taliban, triggered the internal succession dispute and raised questions about the future direction of the insurgency. They suggest new Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Akhtar Mansour intends to send a message that there will be no letup in the insurgency.
But Mansour, 50, has powerful rivals within the Taliban who oppose negotiations and have been pushing for Mullah Omar’s son Yaqoob to take over the movement.
The wave of violence underscores Afghanistan’s volatile security situation amid a faltering peace process. It may believe that by announcing Mullah Omar’s death, it has plunged the Taliban into crisis and thereby weakened the organisation – and deprived it of some of the leverage it derived from its strong showing on the battlefield.
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