Taliban speeds up attacks against foreign troops on New Year's eve

21:07, December 31, 2009      

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As the world and the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) are preparing to celebrate the new year of 2010, Taliban insurgents have intensified attacks on the troops.

The militias in the latest wave of violent attacks carried out double deadly bombings in the southern Kandahar and eastern Khost province Wednesday killing over a dozen American and Canadian service members.

In the first attack against NATO-led forces in Kandahar province, according to a statement released by the military alliance, five Canadians including a journalist were killed.

"Four ISAF soldiers from Canada and one Canadian reporter were killed in an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) strike in Kandahar province on Dec. 30," the statement noted.

"We are deeply saddened by this tragic loss of life," ISAF spokesman Jane Campbell said in another statement.

More than 2,800 Canadian troops have been stationed in Afghanistan within the framework of NATO-led ISAF troops to help strengthen security in the post-Taliban nation.

Canada, where the public support for war in Afghanistan is sliding down, has reportedly lost 138 service members in war-torn Afghanistan since it started deploying troops there in 2002.

The second deadly attack occurred in the eastern Khost province Wednesday left eight Americans dead.

All those killed in the bloody blast were intelligence personnel affiliated with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) or contractors, according to media reports.

Penetration into intelligence base and blasting it speak of militants' ability in conducting organized attacks, some local analysts said.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid in talks to media via cellular phone from undisclosed locations claimed for responsibility of the Khost attack, detailing that a militant wearing Afghan army uniform moved inside the base and blew himself up killing some 20 service members.

Taliban, in a statement released Thursday to media from an unknown location, vowed to further intensify their attacks against international troops in Afghanistan.

In the statement released in broken English, the militants expressed satisfaction over what it described successful attacks against foreign forces and vowed to speed up their activities in the new year of 2010, which begins on Friday.

"The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (name of ousted Taliban regime) would in the year 2010 force all the foreign occupation forces and the arrogant and hostile White House rulers to withdraw from Afghanistan as quickly as possible," the statement said.

Source: Xinhua
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