Governor blasts ISI for masterminding deadly attack
KABUL (Pajhwok): The governor of western Herat province on Tuesday accused Pakistan’s spy agency, the Inter-services Intelligence (ISI), of masterminding the attack that left 21 Afghan soldiers dead in eastern Kunar province.
Elsewhere, hundreds of people attended a memorial service in southern Ghazni province to pay tribute to the slain Afghan National Army service members.
Another seven soldiers were kidnapped following the well-organized assault that involved a large number of heavily armed Pakistani, Chechen and Afghan Taliban militants in the Ghaziabad district of Kunar, which borders Pakistan.
Afghan officials said the attackers came from across the border and attacked the ANA border outpost early Sunday.
The fallen troops were brought to the Mohammad Daud Khan Hospital in Kabul a day earlier and the coffins wrapped in the Afghan flag were released to families after a special ceremony.
Addressing a press conference, Herat Governor Syed Fazlullah Wahidi alleged the ISI was involved in the assault.nThe former Kunar governor said the Afghan Taliban lacked the ability of launching such a well-planned attack, which he said had been planned outside of the country.
In Ghazni, hundreds of people gathered at the governor’s house to offer prayers for the slain soldiers.
Ghazni governor Musa Khan Akbarzada, his Logar counterpart Niaz Mohammad Ameri, provincial council members, government officials and hundreds of local people attended the ceremony.
Akbarzada said the war, which had been imposed on the Afghans, did not benefit the Taliban, but their foreign masters.
The governor called on the Afghan Taliban to shun violence and reconcile with the government.
He said the attack would not deter the morale of Afghan forces, but it would strengthen their spirit to defend the country and the people.
The Logar governor, condemning the Kunar incident, asked the rebels to lay down their arms and embrace peace, saying the Taliban could achieve nothing by killing innocent Muslims.
ANA’s 203rd Thunder Military Corps third battalion commander in Ghazni, Gen. Ghulam Haider Nekpa, said the Afghan forces would defend the country until their last breath. He said the forces would take revenge on those involved in the killing of their colleagues.
Ghazni police chief Zarawar Zahid vowed to seek revenge for the deaths until his last drop of blood.
A Ghazni City resident, Mohammad Anwar, who attended the prayer, believed Pakistani was involved in the Kunar incident and asked President Karzai not to call anymore the neighbouring country as brotherly nation.
President Karzai has slammed Pakistan for failing to eliminate terror nests after the Kunar incident and cancelled a planned two-day visit to Sri Lanka.
Afghanistan and Pakistan regularly accuse each other of supporting militant attacks in the other country.
Karzai's comments came days after Islamabad said 23 of its kidnapped paramilitary soldiers had been killed on Afghan soil.
The Taliban have claimed responsibility for the Ghaziabad attack.
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