The Weekend Leader - Afghan Defence Minister targeted in car bomb attack

Afghan Defence Minister targeted in car bomb attack

New Delhi/Kabul



An explosives-laden car detonated close to the residence of Afghanistan Acting Defence Minister Bismillah Muhammadi in Kabul city Tuesday night.

Local media reports said since Muhammadi was not at the residence at the time of the explosion, neither he nor his family members were harmed.

The Afghan Acting Defence Minister in a video clip confirmed that he and his family members were safe but added that several of his bodyguards were injured.

"Attacks of this sort by vampires will not weaken my morale in defending the Afghan people and my country," said Muhammadi in his video clip.

The attack left five dead and 20 more wounded.

The report said the explosion which was heard in kilometers was followed by a gunfight between the guards at the residence and gunmen who entered the home.

Spokesperson of the Ministry of Interior Affairs Mirwais Stanikzai said the gunfight came to an end nearly four hours after the gunmen entered the home and started fighting the police Special Forces deployed at the place.

Stanikzai though did not disclose the number of assailants killed, police had said they had gunned down three gunmen.

The assailants had taken 80 people hostage who were later saved by the police special forces.

No one has taken responsibility for the attack.

Meanwhile, Afghanistan Foreign Minister Mohammad Haneef Atmar, during a telephone conversation with the External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, talked about the escalation of violence, widespread human rights violations by the Taliban, and the foreign terrorist groups operating in Afghanistan.

Atmar emphasised the need to hold a special session of the UN Security Council on Afghanistan. India currently holds the rotating presidency of the United Nations Security Council, a statement by Afghan Foreign Office said.

Atmar discussed the unprecedented increase in the Taliban's brutal attacks on the Afghan people, which have resulted in the killing of scores of civilians and displacement of many thousands of others.

Atmar highlighted the war crimes committed by the Taliban in their recent attacks carried out in collusion with foreign fighters and terrorist groups in Afghanistan, calling them flagrant violations of international humanitarian law and warned of catastrophic ramifications.

Given the catastrophic consequences of the Afghan war on stability, security, and prosperity in the region, the Foreign Minister raised with his Indian counterpart the proposition of Kabul regarding convening an emergency UN Security Council meeting on issues related to Afghanistan, particularly an immediate cessation of violence and the success of peace talks.

The Indian Minister of External Affairs expressed his country's deep concern over the escalation of violence, insecurity, and explicit human rights violations by the Taliban and terrorists in Afghanistan.

Jaishankar called the holding of the UN Security Council meeting important for the immediate cessation of human rights abuses and the establishment of lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan and the region. He reassured Minister Atmar of his country's commitment to reviewing Afghanistan's proposal and conducting the necessary consultations.

The two sides also discussed the agenda and the level of participation in the upcoming meetings on the Afghan peace process in Doha.-IANS

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