Afghan Jihad Update: “Series of bombings rattles Afghan capital, feeding unease about country”s insurgency,” from AP, with thanks to Sr. Soph:
KABUL, Afghanistan – When the call to prayer rings out, Muslim faithful converge on the blue-tiled Qaraman-e-Karbala Mosque in the Afghan capital. At the gates, they are politely stopped and those with bags are searched.
The imam, Mohammad Kazim, is apologetic but firm about the new rules imposed after five bombs rattled Kabul on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Coming after bloody anti-Western riots in May, the blasts have intensified unease in the city, where many people increasingly worry that the insurgency in the countryside is creeping into what has been a relative oasis since the Taleban’s ouster more than four years ago.
“For the security of the people and the security of the mosque, we must take these measures,” Kazim said. “After the riots and now these explosions, the face of Kabul has changed. Everyone must take precautions. Nowhere is safe.”
The blasts targeted government workers and security forces, killing one person and wounding four dozen. Three of the bombs hit buses taking people to work, and all were remote-controlled devices hidden in pushcarts – reminiscent of attacks that plague Afghanistan’s south and east.
“There’s a recognition that security has been deteriorating for a while. This was a mark of that. When people are attacked going to work, there’s something wrong,” said Jamie Terzi, acting country director for the US-based aid group CARE International.
Kabul is now on high alert, with more police patrols and checkpoints in the streets….
The bombings” effects were evident at the Women’s Park, an urban sanctuary for women only.
Turned into a trash dump during the Taleban era, it was reclaimed two years ago and generally drew some 500 women and their children on a typical Friday, the Muslim day of prayer. After the attacks, only a few dozen were scattered around the park’s playground and small shops.