Suicide bombers begin to target central Afghan province


Map of Afghanistan’s provinces. Click map to view larger image.

This report from Xinhua on a suicide attack in Afghanistan is pretty mundane except for one detail: the location, in the central province of Ghor. From Xinhua:

A suicide bomber who attempting to target security forces in western Ghor province was killed in his blast on Sunday, provincial governor Mohammad Iqbal Munib said.

“A man strapped explosive device in his body and attempted to target security forces in provincial capital Chaghcharan was identified by police and surrounded but the terrorist left with no option and blew himself up this morning,” Munib told Xinhua.

The bomber was killed in the blast and no military or civilians had been harmed, the official emphasized.

There have been two suicide attacks in Ghor over the past six weeks. The Oct. 13 attack, which also failed, was the first suicide attack in Ghor since the US entered Afghanistan in 2001. The Taliban clearly are attempting to expand their suicide operations against security forces into the far-flung areas of Afghanistan.

A Taliban commander known as Mullah Mustafa operates in Ghor. Mustafa is said to command more than 100 fighters, and the US military said he receives support from the Ansar Corps, which is a sub-command of Iran’s Qods Force, the external operations branch of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps. The Ansar Corps helps al Qaeda fighters enter western Afghanistan, some of whom carry out suicide attacks. The US targeted Mustafa in an airstrike in June 2009, and, according to Mustafa, killed his son and nephew.

Bill Roggio is a Senior Fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and the Editor of FDD's Long War Journal.

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