KABUL (AFP) – Afghan police said Saturday they had busted an Al-Qaeda-linked “terrorist network” organising suicide bombings in the capital, Kabul, which has suffered a rash of attacks in the past weeks.The network included six militants, some of whom were foreigners, who were arrested this week in Logar Province just southeast of the city, counter-terrorism police chief Abdul Manan Farahi told reporters here.
Farahi said rebels had been building car-bombs and helping would-be suicide-bombers come to Kabul from neighbouring Pakistan, where militants are said to have support and training in tribal areas along the border.
“The terrorist network was facilitating suicide bombings in Kabul,” he said.
The police chief said the arrested men were among the “main organisers” of the suicide blasts and their capture was one of the most significant successes of the police force.
Farahi said the men were allied to Al-Qaeda but did not spell out if they were from the Taliban movement, which is supported by Osama bin Laden’s network and is blamed for most of the scores of suicide bombings in Afghanistan.
The Taliban, ousted from power nearly six years ago in a US-led invasion, are waging an insurgency that has seen a spiral of suicide attacks.
The first such blast in Afghanistan was carried out by suspected Al-Qaeda militants exactly six year ago — September 9, 2001 — and killed renowned resistance commander Ahmad Shah Massoud.
Suicide blasts have since surged to more than 120 last year and about 70 so far this year, around 10 in Kabul.