Appendix A: Examples of Insurgent Attacks in 2006

The following list provides selections from a database compiled by Human Rights Watch of attacks believed to have been carried out by the Taliban and other insurgent groups in Afghanistan in 2006. The entries below are based on Human Rights Watch research and interviews, reviews of security reports by the Afghanistan NGO Security Office, media reports, and statements by government officials, non-governmental organizations, and spokesmen of insurgent groups.

January 5, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack in the city of Tirin Kot, in southern Uruzgan province, a few hundred yards away from where US ambassador to Afghanistan Ronald Neumann was meeting with local leaders. The explosion killed at least 10 civilians and wounded approximately 50 others. The US Ambassador was unhurt in the blast. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack and said the bomb was intended to kill “high-ranking Americans.”

January 14, 2006 — A bomb exploded in downtown Khost city, in eastern Afghanistan, in close proximity to a group of children celebrating their Eid holidays. The explosion killed two children and wounded 19 others.

January 17, 2006 — A bomb exploded in a crowd attending a wrestling match in Spin Boldak in southern Kandahar province. The explosion killed at least 20 civilians. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility on the day of the attack, but later rescinded his statement and said the Taliban was not involved.

February 7, 2006 — A civilian vehicle carrying four construction workers in western Farah province was hit by a roadside bomb. All four passengers were killed: the Afghan driver, a Turkish engineer, an Indian engineer and a Nepalese security guard. The construction workers were assisting with repairs to the main road from Herat to Kandahar.

February 7, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on a Kandahar city police station. The attack killed 6 police officers and 5 civilians; 13 other civilians were wounded, five seriously. Shortly after the incident a Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for this suicide attack.

March 11, 2006 — Six employees of a road building company—including four Macedonian workers and two Afghans—were abducted by a group of armed men on the border of Kandahar and Helmand provinces. The following day, the two Afghans were released unharmed but the four Macedonians were executed. According to the released drivers, armed men wearing police uniforms in a highway police vehicle stopped the group. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack and stated that they had executed the four for being spies. “We will kill anyone who is helping the Americans,” a spokesman said.

March 12, 2006 — Two suicide bombers in Kabul carried out an attack directed at former Afghan president Sibghatullah Mojaddedi, now a senior official in the Afghan parliament. Two men with suicide vests detonated their explosives near Mojaddedi’s vehicle, killing four pedestrians and severely wounding two others, including one girl. Mojaddidi was slightly burned on his hands and face. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

April 8, 2006 — A Taliban suicide bomber unsuccessfully attempted to drive an explosive-laden car into the main gate of the Italian-led ISAF Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) compound in Herat. The attack killed an Afghan guard on duty at the time, three civilians and injured seven others. The attack caused severe damage to the surrounding buildings but not serious damage to the PRT facility. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the attack.

April 11, 2006 — Three rockets were fired at a US military base in Asadabad, in eastern Kunar province. One rocket hit a school in Asadabad city, killing seven school children and injuring 30 more, and one teacher.

April 25, 2006 — Two remote controlled mines exploded on the Kabul airport road near a coalition military compound. The mines were placed inside a garbage container near a mosque. The bombs exploded minutes apart, killing two civilians and wounding three others. The coalition forces suffered no damage or casualties.

April 28, 2006—Insurgents abducted and later killed Kasula Suryanarayana, an Indian telecommunications engineer, near Qalat city in southern Zabul province. A statement from the Taliban demanded that all Indian workers leave Afghanistan within 24 hours or the hostage would be killed. Suryanarayana’s body was found decapitated on April 30. A Taliban spokesman said the group had not planned to kill the hostage but killed him when he tried to escape.

May 9, 2006 — Gunmen ambushed a vehicle belonging to the Department of Women’s affairs in Lashkar Gah City. There were three people in the vehicle: a driver and two women. The driver was killed and one women was wounded.

May 12, 2006 — Gunmen ambushed a UNICEF convoy in Karokh district in Herat province. The convoy was transporting doctors from a clinic in Badghis province back to neighboring Herat. The gunmen launched a rocket propelled grenade at the lead vehicle in the convoy, a civilian vehicle clearly marked with a “UN” logo. Two people were killed in the attack: a UN staff-person and an engineer with a non-governmental humanitarian organization.

May 21, 2006 — The body of a man was found in Badghis province; authorities believe he was abducted and killed by insurgents involved in the May 12 attack detailed above. Officials said the man had informed authorities about the identities of suspected perpetrators of the May 12 attack, possibly making him a target.

May 21, 2006 — A vehicle-borne suicide bomber carried out an attack on a US military convoy on Jalalabad Road in Kabul city. The suicide attacker detonated after the military convoy had passed. Four civilian bystanders and the suicide bomber were killed and two others were injured. Several roadside shops were also destroyed in the attack. No damage was reported to the military convoy. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

May 22, 2006 — A remote-controlled bomb detonated near a vehicle used by a public health NGO in Wardak province near Kabul. The explosion killed all four passengers of the vehicle, including a doctor, two nurses and the driver.

May 27, 2006 — Two armed men on a motorbike assassinated Mawlavi Fazul Rahman, a prominent religious scholar in Ghazni province. The shooting occurred as Mawlavi Rahman was returning home from a religious graduation ceremony. The following day the Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

May 30, 2006 — Four gunmen on motorcycles ambushed a NGO staff vehicle in Mingajig district of Jowzjan province. The attackers stopped the car and executed four aid workers by gunshots to the head. Nothing was stolen from the vehicle.

June 2-3, 2006 — A vehicle-borne suicide attacker attempted to attack a coalition convoy in Arghandab district in Kandahar province. The bombers detonated after the convoy passed. The explosion killed three civilians and the suicide bomber. One other civilian was also wounded in the incident. The same day, gunmen in Kunar province shot and killed Haji Mursalin, a local tribal leader, as he attended mosque. Mursalin had been working on reconciliation efforts with insurgent groups. The next day, Dr. Eid Mohammad, the director of a provincial health department, and his brother, were shot and killed by gunmen in Wormami District of Paktika province. The two men were en route to visit a newly-built health clinic. Local authorities said they suspected Taliban forces had carried out the attacks on both Haji Mursalin and Eid Mohammad.

June 4, 2006 — A vehicle-borne suicide bomber carried out an attack on a convoy carrying Afghan government and coalition officials in Kandahar city. The explosion killed four pedestrians and wounded 12 other civilians, three of whom were in critical condition. Coalition and government personnel suffered no casualties or damage.

June 8, 2006 — Armed men on a motorcycle in Chemtal district of Balkh province attacked three staff members of a national humanitarian NGO. The attackers ambushed the NGO vehicle with gunfire. When the vehicle stopped, the attackers shot at the three aid workers in the car, killing two and severely injuring the third.

June 15, 2006 — A bomb planted on a bus exploded in Kandahar city. The bus had been carrying local workers to the Kandahar airfield. The explosion killed at least 12 passengers and wounded 14 others, including passersby. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

June 23, 2006 — Four bodies were found beheaded in Shahjoy district in Zabul province. The bodies appeared to be four civilians who insurgents kidnapped on June 19, 2006. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the beheadings, and accused the four of spying for coalition forces and the Afghan government.

June 24, 2006 — Two men on a motorcycle shot and killed Abdul Satar, a member of the religious shura in Kandahar city. The victim was responsible for computerizing newsletters and magazines for the shura.

July 3, 2006 — Gunmen attacked a taxi carrying six civilians working for the coalition forces in Pech district of Kunar province. The assailants killed five of the civilians and critically wounded a sixth. Taliban spokesmen had repeatedly left warnings in Kunar province telling local residents not to work for government or international forces.

July 4-5, 2006 — Several bombings occurred in Kabul city, including two attacks on the street and two bombings on government employee buses. One of the street attacks on July 5 was carried out in front of the Ministry of Justice. The bomb, hidden in a vegetable cart, killed two civilians and wounded two others. Another bomb detonated the same day near a Ministry of Commerce bus transporting workers. The explosion killed two civilians and injured four others.

July 13, 2006 — A bomb exploded in the main bazaar in Mazar-e Sharif in Balkh province. The attack took place across the street from the city’s Blue Mosque. The bomb detonated as an ISAF convoy was passing. One civilian was killed and three others were injured, including one child. The ISAF convoy was unharmed.

July 16, 2006 — A suicide attacker detonated himself in close proximity to a military patrol in Gardez city on the main road to Khost. The explosion killed the suicide attacker and four civilians. Eight other civilians were also injured. The military patrol was unaffected.

July 22, 2006 — A suicide attacker carried out an attack on a passing military convoy in Kandahar city. The attack killed the suicide bomber, two coalition soldiers, and wounded eight other soldiers and five pedestrians. After the attack, as coalition personnel sealed off the site of the attack, a crowd of civilians assembled approximately 150 meters from the scene. A second suicide bomber then detonated next to the crowd, killing six civilians and wounding 27 others. Taliban spokesman Yousuf Ahmadi said the Taliban had carried out both attacks. Ahmadi told Agence France-Presse that, “The second [suicide attack] was pre-planned to impact more casualties.”

July 23, 2006 — A suicide bomber detonated in close proximity to a police check post in Gurbez district in eastern Khost province. Four civilians were killed and six others were wounded in the incident. No police casualties were reported.

August 3, 2006 — A suicide attacker detonated a car bomb in a crowded market in Panjwai Markaz, a town about 25 km west of Kandahar city. The intended target of the attack appeared to be a Canadian ISAF patrol, but the bomb detonated when the patrol was roughly 200-400 meters away. The patrol was unharmed but the attack killed at least 21 civilians, including children, and wounded dozens more. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

August 12, 2006 — Insurgents launched several mortar rounds on a road construction company in Kunar province. Several mortar rounds hit near the construction company’s compound, causing no casualties or damage. Two other mortar rounds fell short and hit a residential compound, injuring 20 family members and killing numerous livestock.

August 28, 2006 — A bomb detonated in the middle of the day in a crowded bazaar in Lashkar Gah, Helmand. The bomb killed 15 civilians and wounded 47 others, including 15 children. A Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for attack and stated that the target was a civilian businessman.

September 8, 2006 — A suicide bomber detonated next to a US military convoy traveling through a crowded street in the Wazir Akbar Khan area of Kabul; two US soldiers and 14 civilians were killed, including several women and children. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

September 10, 2006 — A suicide bomber targeted and killed Abdul Hakim Taniwal, the 63-year-old governor of Paktia, along with his nephew, driver, and a bodyguard. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. (The next day, September 11, 2006, a suicide bomber targeted Taniwal’s funeral, killing two children and wounding approximately 40 other civilians.)

September 25, 2006 — Two gunmen on a motorcycle assassinated Safia Ama Jan, a woman in her mid-60s who served as the Kandahar director for Afghanistan’s Ministry of Women’s Affairs. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

September 26, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on a vehicle near the provincial governor’s office in Lashkar Gah, in Helmand. At the time of the attack a crowd of civilians was gathered outside of the governor’s office, applying for permission letters to travel to Mecca for the Hajj. The explosion from the suicide attack killed three soldiers and 13 civilians, and wounded 18 other civilians. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

September 30, 2006 — A suicide bomber detonated near the Ministry of Interior office in downtown Kabul, killing 12 civilians, including an 8-year-old boy, and injuring another 42. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

October 13, 2006 — A suicide attacker in a car targeted a coalition convoy. The explosion killed one soldier and eight civilians. Eleven other civilians were wounded. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

October 18, 2006 — Three armed men on a motorcycle stopped a taxi carrying two government staff members in Bala Murghab district, in western Badghis province. The government staff members were forced out from the vehicle and shot dead. The taxi driver was unharmed, possibly because he was not a government employee.

October 27, 2006 — A civilian vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb in Tirin Kot in Uruzgan province. The explosion killed 14 civilians and wounded three others. The bomb was planted on a route used by both civilians and coalition vehicles.

November 26, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on police officials in a crowded restaurant in Paktika province. The attacker’s target appeared to be a district commissioner and regional head of police, who were eating breakfast at the restaurant. The district commissioner and the head of police were injured, and fifteen people were killed and 25 others injured, most of them civilians. Many of the casualties were children.

November 27, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on an ISAF convoy near a bus stand in Kandahar city. Two ISAF soldiers were killed and one other was wounded, but nine civilians were also wounded. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the bombing.

December 3, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on an ISAF convoy driving through Kandahar city. Three ISAF soldiers were wounded and one of their vehicles was severely damaged in the incident. In addition, two civilians were killed and seven others wounded. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

December 5, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on an ISAF convoy in Panjwai village in Kandahar province. Two ISAF soldiers were wounded in the bombing. Six civilians were also wounded, including a small child. Four of the civilians were critically wounded.

December 7, 2006 — A suicide bomber attacked a joint ISAF and Afghan military convoy in Kandahar city. The attacker detonated before reaching the convoy, wounding 10 civilians, including a small girl. No casualties were reported to the military convoy.

December 9, 2006 — Gunmen scaled the wall of a residential compound in a village in the southeastern province of Kunar, entered the house, and shot and killed two sisters who worked as local schoolteachers, as well as their mother, grandmother, and a 20-year-old male relative. Prior to their murders, the two teachers had received a written warning from the Taliban to stop teaching or “end up facing the penalty.”

December 14, 2006 — A suicide bomber carried out an attack on a police vehicle near Qalat city in Zabul province. Only five police personnel were injured, but three civilians were killed and five others were wounded.

Appendix B: Attacks on Afghan Educational Facilities in 2006

Download Appendix B as PDF file (8 pages, 70 kb)