Twin offensives leave 16 dead including 12 Afghan security personnel, wound 23

08:16, December 20, 2010      

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Afghan policemen investigate at the site of a suicide blast in Kabul, Afghanistan, Dec. 19, 2010. An Afghan army bus was attacked on Sunday in Kabul killing five army personnel and wounding another nine. (Xinhua/Omid)
After almost eight months of lull in the Afghan capital Kabul, the Taliban insurgents carried out suicide bombing there on Sunday and once again smashed the hope for embracing lasting peace among the war-weary people.

Sunday's bombing in Kabul was part of a coordinated twin brazen offensives carried out in the shape of suicide bombings targeted the Afghan army in Kabul and the northern Kunduz province which left 16 dead, including four bombers, and injured 23 others on a single day on Sunday.

In the first offensive, two militants equipped with suicide vests, hand grenades and AK-47s stormed the national army recruitment center in Kunduz city, the capital of the northern Kunduz province, at 06:30 a.m. local time.

One of the attackers, immediately after entering into the compound, blew himself up and the second one, after taking position, started firing on the service members inside the compound.

To control the situation, the Afghan army and police backed by the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) servicemembers, cordoned off the area and started pounding, which left nine dead, including seven troopers and two bombers.

"After hours of fighting, the situation has been brought under control but unfortunately seven security personnel were martyred and 14 others sustained injuries," acting provincial governor Hamdullah Danishi told Xinhua.

Three of those killed in the firefight are Afghan soldiers and the remaining four are police constables, he added.

He also said the two suicide bombers were also killed as one of them blew himself up and the other was shot dead by security forces during the operation.

An search operation is still continuing inside the compound to find if any terrorist has been hidden, the official further said.

A Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid in talks with media via telephone from undisclosed location claimed responsibility, saying two suicide bombers entered the recruitment center of the Afghan army in Kunduz city on Sunday morning and killed over a dozen soldiers.

About one and a half hours later, a similar offensive shocked the Afghan capital city of Kabul as two suicide bombers in similar tactic targeted a bus of the Afghan national army personnel, killing five and wounding nine others, according to the Defense Ministry.

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