Death toll in Afghanistan bank raid rises to 38

A brazen attack in which five suicide bombers dressed in security force uniforms stormed a bank in the eastern Afghanistan.

Updated: Feb 20, 2011, 22:14 PM IST

Kabul: A brazen attack in which five
suicide bombers dressed in security force uniforms stormed a
bank in the eastern Afghanistan and killed 38 people is a sign
that insurgents are increasingly going after "soft targets,"
the government said on Sunday.

Yesterday`s bombing, just as many members of the
Afghan security forces were collecting their pay, was evidence
that militants are seeking to attack places that are not
heavily barricaded and fortified government buildings or
military compounds, said Interior Ministry spokesman Zemeri
Bashary.

"Unfortunately, we see that there`s a change of tactic
in the terrorist attacks and they are targeting soft targets,"
Bashary said at a news conference in Kabul.

Two recent attacks in Kabul also reflected the
tactical change, he said.

A suicide bomber attacked inside an upscale
supermarket in Kabul on Jan 28, killing eight civilians, and
one attacked a Western-style shopping mall on Feb 14, killing
two security guards.

"In these kind of places, like city centre in Kabul
and Kabul Bank in Jalalabad, these are all areas where mostly
people are going to do daily business," he said.

"No one would expect that they would attack such
places like a bank or shopping mall," Bashary said.

Among those killed in the attack shortly before noon
yesterday on a branch of Kabul Bank in Jalalabad were 21
members of the Afghan national security forces, including 13
policemen and seven soldiers. The other 17 killed were
civilians.

PTI