What a “beautiful” Afghan city. The woman in the photograph is carrying water up the hill to her house. People living here in the states can only imagine how difficult life must be, day in and day out, for the people living in this sewer pit of a country.
The most religious societies on Earth are also the most oppressive and backward, doesn’t that say something about religion? TGO
Refer to story below. Source: Associated Press
KABUL, Afghanistan – Afghan police defused a motorcycle bomb that was meant to go off in the troubled southern city of Kandahar shortly after a suicide car bombing there killed three and wounded 26 people, most of them police, authorities said Tuesday.
Police found the explosives-laden motorbike Monday at a busy intersection in the center of the city, the Interior Ministry said in a statement, about a mile (1.5 kilometers) from where the suicide bomber struck near a police compound and a bank in central Kandahar.
The Kandahar governor’s spokesman, Zalmai Ayubi, said it appeared that the motorcycle bomb had been intended to explode shortly after the suicide bomber detonated his car in what would have been a double attack on the city.
The Taliban have deep roots in southern Afghanistan, their traditional stronghold, and the region has seen some of the worst fighting this year between the militants and foreign and Afghan troops. Police and the Afghan army are often the target of attacks, as are people working with the government and coalition forces.
NATO said a service member was killed by a roadside bomb in southern Afghanistan on Tuesday. It didn’t give the casualty’s nationality or say which province the attack occurred in. This year has been by far the deadliest in the nearly 10 years for coalition troops in Afghanistan, with 699 killed so far, according to an Associated Press count. Last year, 504 were killed.
Afghan police and soldiers are also targeted in attacks, as are people working with the government and coalition forces.
On Tuesday, gunmen killed an employee at the Kandahar mayor’s office as the man was walking in the street, deputy police chief Fazel Ahmed Sherzad said.
No further details were immediately available, but people working for local governance have been targeted in the past. In April, gunmen shot dead Kandahar’s deputy mayor as he knelt for evening prayers in a mosque.
Along with the insurgency, Afghanistan has also been wracked by political uncertainty, with doubts still lingering over the last parliamentary elections, held in September and widely criticized as marred by massive irregularities.
The country’s Supreme Court set up a special tribunal Sunday to review complains of fraud in the vote, casting doubt over the final election results — which were only issued on Nov. 24 — and raising questions whether any decisions by the new tribunal reaches could alter them.
The court had initially proposed the tribunal after receiving scores of fraud and corruption complaints forwarded by the attorney general’s office. But election officials insist that neither the attorney general nor the Supreme Court have the authority to change the results.
The uncertainty has led to anger among the hundreds of losing candidates in the election, which saw 2,500 contenders run for the 249 seats in the lower house of parliament.
On Tuesday, about 300 people demonstrated outside the Supreme Court in Kabul, demanding a review of the election results and saying the judicial procedure ratifying the results has been flawed.
Daud Sultanzoy, one of the candidates who didn’t win a seat, blamed the United Nations and foreign countries for pressuring Afghanistan into issuing the final results despite the irregularities.
“We are aware of undue pressure from the Security Council of the United Nations, we are aware of the undue pressure from embassies here, we are aware of all the interferences,” he said. “They want one thing for themselves in their countries, they want the rule of law in their countries, they want the will of the people in their countries, and in this country they want to dictate something else. They want to dictate political calendars, they want to dictate other interests.”
The election problems have also cast doubt on Afghanistan’s ability to govern itself as the U.S.-led coalition makes plans to gradually hand over responsibility for the country to its own security forces by 2014.
Associated Press writer Mirwais Khan in Kandahar contributed to this report.