A member of the Afghan bomb disposal unit approaches a suicide attacker after his vest was defused in Jalalabad province on Sunday.
Not this time.
An Afghan bomb technician played peacemaker Sunday, donning a heavily armored suit to diffuse a would-be suicide bomber’s vest. The risky maneuver, gone Hollywood in the Oscar-winning drama “The Hurt Locker,” required a deft touch — and a willingness to go face-to-face with powerful explosives.
Sunday’s bomber in Jalalabad attempted to detonate his device before being apprehended and hog-tied. Then, the Afghan soldier, clad in a padded suit topped with a large helmet, approached the subdued terrorist and disabled the device. A photo after the all-clear was given shows the would-be bomber, clad in brown pants and shirt, lying on the ground next to a rifle and three grenades. A red wire is shown threaded through the vest, its three pouches filled with explosives.
Afghan National Army (ANA) soldiers approach the would-be suicide attacker.
The officers took the man into custody and drove him away in the back of a pickup truck.
The successful disposal was a positive end to what has been a deadly year in the volatile country. Nearly 300 Afghan soldiers were killed in a monthlong period, while 753 militants and 180 civilians were killed over the course of the same four-week stretch.Through the end of May, 807 Afghan security force members had been killed since Jan. 1. An additional 365 civilians and 63 coalition troops were killed as well. The Afghan deaths were more than double the number from the same period last year and come as coalition troops hand over all responsibility for combat operations. Coalition troops are winding down what has been nearly 12 years of war and will leave the country next year.
Soldiers took the man into custody and placed him into the back of a pickup truck before hauling him off.
Even Sunday, more deaths were reported. In the Baghlan province in the country’s north, a district police commander and three of his men were killed when a roadside bomb hit their vehicle.