Dozens Killed In Afghanistan Fighting As Foreign Troops Head Home

AFGHANISTAN-UNREST

The Afghan Taliban killed a dozen mine clearers, a Supreme Court official  and several national and foreign soldiers but also suffered heavy losses from intensifying violence ahead of the withdrawal of most international troops in the next two weeks. Reuters report:

In Kabul on Saturday, a bomb ripped through a bus carrying soldiers in Kabul, killing at least seven of them, mangling the vehicle and sending a column of black smoke over the capital.

“A suicide bomber on foot detonated his explosives at the door of a bus carrying army soldiers,” said Hashmat Stanekzai, a spokesman for Kabul police chief. Earlier gunmen shot dead senior Supreme Court official Atiqullah Raoufi as he left his home in the city.

The Taliban, ousted from power by U.S.-backed Afghan forces in 2001, claimed responsibility, but did not say why it had killed him. The hardline Islamist insurgents run their own courts in parts of the country and consider the official judiciary to be corrupt.

Heavily fortified Kabul has seen multiple attacks in recent weeks, including several on army buses and a suicide bomb that killed a German citizen in a French cultural center during a performance of a play that denounced suicide attacks.

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