KANDAHAR, Afghanistan – A Taliban bombing killed an Afghan provincial police chief and gunmen fatally shot an official in charge of women’s affairs on Monday – the latest victims of a campaign targeting government officials across Afghanistan.
The police chief for Nimroz province was travelling home from neighbouring Herat province when his vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the morning hours, said the chief’s secretary Obaidullah, who goes by only one name.
The police chief, Gen. Mohammad Musa Rasouli, was seriously wounded and was rushed to the hospital, where he died of his wounds, said the secretary. Rasouli was returning to his job in Nimroz after a short break in Herat province, Obaidullah said.
Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi said the insurgency had been tracking Rasouli and targeted him.
“We are continuing to target government officials,” Ahmadi said.
Also Monday morning, gunmen shot and killed the head of the women’s affairs department for the eastern Laghman province, said Sarhadi Zewak, a spokesman for the provincial government.
Najia Sediqi was on her way to the office from her home on the outskirts of the provincial capital when she was attacked, Zewak said. She took the job after her predecessor, Anifa Safi, died in a bomb attack in July.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for Sediqi’s killing. Police are investigating, Zewak said. A statement from Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned the killing of Sediqi as a “terrorist attack.”
The latest attacks come after the attempted assassination of the country’s spy chief, Asadullah Khalid, on Thursday. He was seriously injured when a suicide bomber posing as a Taliban peace envoy detonated a hidden explosive.
In the Afghan capital, Kabul, about 200 women marched Monday, carrying pictures of victims of war crimes for which they said the perpetrators have never been brought to justice. They called on the Afghan government to prosecute those accused of war crimes during more than 30 years of conflict in the country.
In the south, a NATO service member was killed in a bomb attack, the international military alliance said. The death brings to five the number of international service members killed so far this month.
Associated Press Writer Rahim Faiez contributed to this report from Kabul.