The New York Times, December 11, 2018
Attacks Across Afghanistan Leave at Least 30 Dead
“Despite calling for support many times, reinforcement forces never arrived”
KABUL, Afghanistan — At least 12 people were killed on the outskirts of Kabul on Tuesday when explosives in a vehicle detonated near a convoy of security forces, Afghan officials said, and at least 12 others were wounded.
It was the deadliest of several violent attacks across Afghanistan on Tuesday that left a total of more than 30 dead, most of them members of security forces.
The site of an attack on a convoy of security forces on the outskirts of Kabul, Afghanistan, on Tuesday. Two women and a child were among the victims, according to the Kabul police. (Photo: Hedayatullah Amid/EPA, via Shutterstock)
Basir Mujahid, a spokesman for the Kabul police, said four of those killed in the attack on the convoy were security officers and eight were civilians. “Two women and a child were among the victims,” he said.
In the northern province of Kunduz, at least 10 police officers were killed and 12 others were wounded when an elite Taliban force known as the Red Unit attacked 15 security outposts in the Chardara District, said Gul Ahmad, a police commander there.
“Despite calling for support many times, reinforcement forces never arrived,” he said.
In the west of the country, Taliban fighters attacked an outpost of the Afghan National Civil Order Police in the Pashtun Zarghun district of Herat Province. Four members of the force were killed in that attack and seven others were wounded, said Abdul Ahad Walizada, the spokesman for the Herat police.
That toll only increased as help was called in. “When reinforcement forces were trying to reach the area, they were hit by a roadside bomb,” Mr. Walizada said. “Two police officers were killed and five others were wounded in the explosion.”
Four other members of security forces were killed in smaller attacks by the Taliban in other parts of Kunduz and Badghis Provinces, local officials said.
Violence across Afghanistan has continued unabated despite recent efforts to urge the Taliban to sit down for peace talks in the hopes of finding a political resolution to the 17-year war. Zalmay Khalilzad, the American special envoy to Afghanistan, is on his third tour of the region since his appointment to that role, trying to build a consensus for bringing the Taliban to talks.
While Afghan forces have suffered casualties that Western officials consider unsustainably high, strikes against the Taliban’s important field commanders also seem to have increased in recent weeks. One of the militant group’s most senior commanders in the south, Mullah Manan, was killed in a recent American airstrike.
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