Afghanistan Spy Agency Points Finger at Pakistan Over Devastating Truck Bombing

The intelligence agency claims that devastating Kabul truck attack was carried out by Haqqani network with direct cooperation from Pakistan's intel agency

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Afghan security forces and residents stand near the crater left by a truck bomb attack in Kabul on May 31, 2017.
Afghan security forces and residents stand near the crater left by a truck bomb attack in Kabul on May 31, 2017.Credit: WAKIL KOHSAR/AFP

Afghanistan's spy agency has blamed the insurgent Haqqani network and neighboring Pakistan for Wednesday's massive truck bombing in which around 90 people were killed in Kabul.

"The plan for today's attack was drawn up by the Haqqani network with direct coordination and cooperation from Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence (ISI)," the National Directorate of Security said in a statement late Wednesday.

The Haqqani network is a particularly brutal insurgency group that closely cooperates with the Taliban. Afghanistan has long accused Pakistan of supporting and sheltering Haqqani and Taliban elites and fighters.
The Taliban denied involvement and no other group claimed responsibility for the attack.

More details surfaced on the attackers' target early Thursday.
An explosives-laden human waste tanker made an effort to enter the green zone, Kabul's diplomatic quarter, hidden behind miles of concrete blast walls, via a police checkpoint adjacent to the German Embassy, Kabul police spokesman Basir Mujahid, told dpa.

When denied entry, the truck turned around, drove on and shortly afterwards blew up in the middle of the street, laying waste to many buildings in the immediate vicinity.

Had the driver been able to get through the checkpoint, he would have had access to several targets, including the German Embassy, US military installations, the Independent Directorate of Local Governance (IDLG), a gate to the Afghan presidential palace, the Indian and the Italian embassies, and, at the end of this road, the NATO Resolute headquarters and the US embassy.

More than 460 people were wounded in the bombing, which took place during the morning rush hour.

Alongside Germany, France, India, Turkey, Japan, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and Bulgaria also reported damage to their diplomatic missions due to the blast.

Public Health Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ismail Kawusi said the identification process of victims had resumed on Thursday.
However, "some bodies will probably never be found, they were torn to pieces," he told DPA, adding that some of the bodies were hardly identifiable.

There were also "some legs and hands, about 10 or 15" that could not be connected to victims already identified, he said, suggesting the number of dead could rise.

US President Trump offered his deepest condolences for the victims to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in a phone call, "underscoring the barbaric nature of the terrorists who are enemies of all civilized peoples," according to a statement by the White House.

Two friendly matches scheduled to be played between Afghanistan and Pakistan's cricket teams were cancelled by the Afghan Cricket Board following the deadly attack.

The two games were to be played in Lahore city, Pakistan and the Afghan Capital Kabul sometime in July and August.

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