Afghanistan: April 17, 2003

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 For the second time in a week, a bomb went off in Kabul. There were no casualties.

In the eastern city of Jalabad, someone threw a grenade into a UN aid office at night.  There were no casualties. The attacks on Western aid agencies continues, even though such attacks are not popular with most Afghans, are backed by Taliban partisans who want to return harsh Taliban rule.

In the north, government negotiators worked out an end to several days of fighting by rival groups. Hezb-e-Wahadat and Harakat-e-Islami, two small  Shiite Muslim groups, have long been feuding over religious and political issues.  This round of fighting left five dead.

American Task Force Devil, searching for weapons 80 kilometers south of the capital,  found 271 rocket-propelled grenades, four RPG launchers, 40 mortar rounds and hundreds of cases of ammunition for heavy machine guns.

In an area about 300 kilometers southwest of the capital, four Afghan soldiers died in a clash with Taliban fighters.

Afghan refugee camps in northwest Pakistan are being worked by pro-Taliban activists, who are passing out pamphlets urging refugees returning to Afghanistan to fight the Afghan government and foreign troops they encounter. Returning refugees are not eager to do this, but they are not willing to fight the Taliban by trying to chase them out of the refugee camps.

 

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