Posted by: Lister | March 24, 2008

Two different targets

Fuel Supplies and Mine-clearers. (The stories were originally interwoven in the article):

Some 40 road tankers supplying fuel to American troops in Afghanistan have been destroyed by suspected pro-Taleban militants on the border with Pakistan.

The attacks, at the Pakistani border crossing point of Torkham, wounded about 70 people who had gathered in a nearby field.

Foreign forces in Afghanistan receive much of their fuel through Pakistan.

[…] Local officials said two explosions were heard in an area where more than 100 fuel lorries had been parked for the night, waiting to cross the border and deliver fuel to US forces in Afghanistan.

As drivers tried to evacuate the area and escape the flames one truck carrying oil exploded and crowds were showered with burning oil.

Local officials said more than 70 had been injured and were taken to hospitals on both sides of the border. Locals said 50 shops were also destroyed.

Our correspondent says there have been a number of incidents like this in the past few weeks, all thought to have been sabotage and blamed on insurgents as they were attacking vehicles connected with international forces in Afghanistan.

[Mine clearers]

five Afghan mine clearance workers have been killed in the northern province of Jowzjan. […] [They] were attacked by four men on two motorbikes in the district of Fayzabad while on their way back to their base camp in the district of Oqacah.

[…] seven others travelling in the truck which was attacked were badly injured.

[…] This part of Afghanistan is thought to be an where the Taleban have little influence.

Farid Homayoun of the Hallow Trust, the biggest de-mining group in Afghanistan, condemned the attack and appealed to all parties to respect de-miners who he said were “very neutral across political and ethnic groups”.

“Killing innocent de-miners is not going to achieve anything and is working against the quarter of the population that are affected by land mines,” Mr Homayoun said.


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