Wed, Oct 11, 2006 - Page 6 News List

Bicycle bomb used against police bus in Afghanistan

UNSAFE CENTER Since the invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, Kabul had been one of the safest areas in the country, but recent bombings are threatening to change all that

AFP , KABUL

A French soldier takes pictures of the bicycle used in a bomb attack against a police bus in Kabul yesterday.

PHOTO: AP

A bomb struck a police bus in the Afghan capital yesterday, wounding more than a dozen people in the latest attack in Kabul where security is at its worst since the Taliban were forced out five years ago.

The device was attached to a bicycle and exploded as the bus passed during the morning rush hour, Kabul police criminal investigation department chief Alishah Paktiawal said.

"It was a remote-controlled bomb fixed on a bicycle on the roadside which targeted a ministry of interior police bus," he said.

"More than 10 police are wounded. Two to three civilians who were in a taxi behind the bus are also wounded," he added.

A purported spokesman for the Taliban, Yousuf Ahmadi, said over the telephone that the extremist movement had been behind the attack.

"Our mujahidin targeted a police bus with a remote-controlled bomb," he said, claiming 14 police had been killed or wounded. The Taliban frequently exaggerate their casualty claims.

The blast blew out the windows of the bus and those of nearby shops were also shattered.

A shopkeeper said he had seen several people hurt in the explosion, including his brother who had been outside the shop.

"I was busy in my shop and suddenly heard a big bang followed by a big cloud of dust," said the man, who gave his name only as Sadiq.

"When I came out of the shop, I saw my brother was wounded in his right arm and his leg. In the shop next door two friends were badly wounded, one with serious facial injuries -- he is hard to recognize," he said.

"I also helped two wounded civilians who had fallen into a ditch," Sadiq added.

Kabul has seen an increase in terror attacks in recent weeks, with six deadly suicide bombs since the beginning of September and various other blasts, many targeted at police.

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