Indian Embassy attack in Kabul: 7 militants nabbed



Kabul: Seven suspected Afghan terrorists responsible for the Indian embassy bombing and several other attacks in Kabul have been arrested, the Afghan intelligence agency said on Monday, pointing out their links in Pakistan.

The seven suspected militants having links to Afghan Taliban leaders currently based in Pakistan, are responsible for a series of attacks in Kabul, including one on the Indian Embassy last year and on a guest house frequented by Indians.

The men arrested over the past one week received training in Pakistan, according to the Afghan National Security Directorate (NSD) spokesman Seyd Ansari.

During the past year the group organised about eight bombings that together killed 37 people before their arrest, Ansari said.

"The seven terrorists responsible for organising a dozen suicide attacks over the past one year, including last Tuesday's suicide attack in Darulaman locality that left two dozen people dead, were arrested over the past week," Ansari told a press conference here.

Among the attacks the group had carried out, Ansari said, was a deadly suicide and gun attack on two Kabul guest houses packed with foreigners.

The February 26 raid resulted in the deaths of 16 people, including seven Indians, a French filmmaker and an Italian diplomat.

"We are saying that they have been trained on the other side of the border, so it is clear that the intelligence service of our neighbouring country has its role in the training and supporting of this terrorist group," he said in a clear reference to Pakistan.

He added that the group is plotting several attacks in Kabul, but security forces have foiled their attempts.

He said all the suspects were Afghan nationals who receive orders from Taliban shadow governor for Kabul, Daud Sorkha, and another suspect Taj Mohammad, who are living in Pakistan.

"All members of this band have been arrested except Daud Sorkha and Taj Mohammad," he said.

The terrorists are responsible for a series of suicide attacks, including attacks on Indian Embassy and in Kabul's diplomatic area last year, and attacks on a guest house in February this year, Ansari was quoted as saying by Xinhua news agency.

The 2009 suicide attack on the Indian Embassy had killed 17 people.

The group is also responsible for a suicide car bombing attack targeting foreign troop's convoy last Tuesday, according to Ansari.

The incident left 20 people dead, including six NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) service members, and 54 others injured, he said. Seventeen vehicles were also damaged in the incident.

Taliban militants have claimed responsibility for the attack last Tuesday.

Ansari said the group was linked to Afghan Taliban with bases in Pakistan's semi-autonomous tribal belt that borders Afghanistan.

The Taliban have waged their insurgency since the late 2001 US-led invasion of Afghanistan threw them out of power.

PTI