- Title: AFGHANISTAN/INDIA: Bomb at Indian embassy in Kabul has hallmarks of spy agency
- Date: 8th July 2008
- Summary: SOLDIERS LAYING WREATHS AND SALUTING FLAG ON COFFIN POLICE CARRYING COFFIN TO VEHICLE VARIOUS OF RELATIVES
- Embargoed: 23rd July 2008 15:21
- Topics: Crime / Law Enforcement
- Reuters ID: LVAWVV6IIXDOPR8F9I1RWZR5C9T
- Aspect Ratio: 4:3
- Story Text: Afghanistan says the Indian embassy bomb in Kabul has the "hallmarks" of a particular spy agency that it claims has conducted similar attacks inside the country before. Security is beefed up in the Afghan capital and bodies of Indians killed in the attack arrive in New Delhi.
The bombing of the Indian embassy in Kabul has all the hallmarks of a particular intelligence agency that has a record of attacks in Afghanistan, a government spokesman said on Tuesday (July 8).
Afghanistan has accused Pakistani agents of being behind a number of attacks in recent weeks and Afghan President Hamid Karzai threatened last month to send troops across the border to attack militants there if Pakistan did not take action.
"The sophistication of this attack and the kind of material that was used in it, the specific targeting, everything has the hallmarks of a particular intelligence agency that has conducted similar terrorist acts inside Afghanistan in the past," Presidential Palace spokesman Humayun Hamidzada told a news conference.
A suicide car bomb rammed into the gates of the Indian embassy in Kabul on Monday (July 7), killing 41 people, including two Indian diplomats and two Indian guards. Many of the other victims were people queuing for visas and shoppers at a nearby market.
Ordinary Afghans said on Tuesday they were scared of getting caught up in the spiralling violence.
"All Afghans are afraid -- whenever I go across the centre of the city and go towards the university, I fear an explosion will take place,"
said Nader Shah, a university student.
Bodies of the Indians who died in the attack were flown into the Indian capital New Delhi on Tuesday. They were met by grieving relatives and a wreath-laying ceremony was held.
It was the deadliest attack in Kabul since U.S.-led and Afghan forces overthrew the Taliban in 2001.
A Taliban spokesman denied responsibility for the attack, though another militant spokesman said earlier the hardline Islamist militia had been behind the bombing. The Taliban often disown attacks that kill large numbers of civilians.
Afghan analysts argue Pakistan is loath to see the emergence of a strong Afghanistan that is friendly to India and is secretly backing the Taliban as a "strategic asset", enabling Pakistani forces to concentrate on defending the Indian border.
Pakistan denies the Afghan accusations and strongly condemned Monday's attack.
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