KABUL, AFGHANISTAN | Afghan officials blamed a brazen series of weekend attacks on the Haqqani Network, saying Monday that fighters captured in the assault claimed they were affiliated with the insurgent faction tied to the Taliban and al Qaeda.
In addition, President Hamid Karzai said the attacks were an “intelligence failure by us and especially NATO” that allowed the militants to enter Kabul and other targeted cities, and called for a full investigation. However he praised the Afghan security forces’ response to the attacks.
Afghan Interior Minister Besmillah Mohammadi said one militant arrested during Sunday’s assault on Kabul and three other cities confessed that he was loyal to the Haqqanis.
And officials in two provinces said they too suspected that attacks in their cities were the work of the Haqqanis.
Former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen said in October the group acts as a “veritable arm” of the Pakistani intelligence agency - an accusation Islamabad denied.
During the series of attacks that continued into Monday morning, eight policemen and three civilians were killed along with 36 insurgents, Mr. Mohammadi said.
“One of the terrorists who has been arrested in Jalalabad has confessed that they were trained and equipped outside of our borders,” Mr. Mohammadi told a news conference. “He has confessed that they were in one of the branches of the Haqqani network. We have his confession.”
Lutfullah Mashal, a spokesman for the Afghan intelligence service, said two suicide bombers and another insurgent arrested on Sunday on the west side of the city had confessed to being members of the Haqqani Network. He said the three are suspected of plotting to kill Vice President Karim Khalili.
Apart from Kabul, the eastern capitals of Paktia, Logar and Nangarhar provinces also came under attack Sunday as suicide bombers tried to storm a NATO base, an airport and police installations there.View Entire Story
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