The IOM is an inter-governmental organization based in Geneva that helps resettle people worldwide. It operates in Afghanistan in a mission coordinated by the UN, but is not an agency of the world body. Last Thursday in Kabul, a suicide car bomber killed six Americans, including two soldiers, and nine Afghan bystanders in an attack on a US convoy. Another insurgent faction, Hizb-i-Islami, claimed that bombing.
Militants have staged dramatic assaults in the past on Afghan security and international targets in the capital, but the two months before that had been relatively calm there.
Howver, as the Taliban spring offensive gets underway, it will test the Afghan forces’ ability to keep security now that international combat forces are pulling back ahead of next year’s withdrawal.
Most of the US-led military coalition will leave by the end of next year, more than a dozen years after launching the war to topple the Taliban regime over its sheltering of al-Qaeda’s leadership.
The coalition on Friday condemned the attack and praised the work of the Afghan forces, saying that international personnel provided only medical support.
“Their prompt and effective action saved the lives of other innocent Afghans and members of the international community,” said General Joseph Dunford, the commander of international forces.