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Hezb-i-Islami claims Kabul suicide attack to avenge film

Afghan insurgent group Hezb-i-Islami on Tuesday claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing in Kabul targeting foreigners, saying it was carried out by a woman to avenge a US-made film deemed insulting to Islam.

world Updated: Sep 18, 2012 10:21 IST
AFP

Afghan insurgent group Hezb-i-Islami on Tuesday claimed responsibility for a suicide car bombing in Kabul targeting foreigners, saying it was carried out by a woman to avenge a US-made film deemed insulting to Islam.

The claim was made by spokesman Zubair Sidiqi in a telephone call to AFP from an undisclosed location. It is extremely rare for the faction to claim a suicide attack in Afghanistan. It is also rare for women to carry out suicide attacks.

"The bombing was carried out by a woman named Fatima. The bombing was in retaliation for the insult to our Prophet," he said.

The attack came a day after protests turned violent for the first time in Afghanistan over "Innocence of Muslims", as hundreds of angry men hurled stones at a US military base, clashed with police and shouted "Death to America".

The movie, believed to have been produced by a small group of extremist Christians, has sparked a week of furious protests outside US embassies and other American symbols, killing 19 people in at least 20 countries before Tuesday's bombing.

Hezb-i-Islami is Afghanistan's second-biggest insurgent group after the Taliban and is led by Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, a former prime minister.

Earlier this year, he told the Afghan Islamic Press news agency that he was ready for meaningful talks with all parties to end the decade-long war in Afghanistan, but was dismissive about the results of contacts he said had already been had with Washington and the Afghan government.

Hekmatyar, a marginalised Afghan warlord whose party was first established in the 1980s to resist the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, leads thousands of fighters in the east and northeast of the country.

First Published: Sep 18, 2012 10:18 IST