An explosion killed four Afghan police including a district chief on Thursday as they attempted to defuse a roadside bomb in the restive south, officials said. Afghanistan has seen a flare-up in violence ahead of the second-round presidential election on June 14, with Taliban insurgents threatening to disrupt the polls.
Thursday´s blast occurred as Mohammad Qasim and his team attempted to defuse one of two roadside bombs found in Waghiz district of Ghazni province. “They defused the first bomb and while they were trying to defuse the second one nearby, it detonated and killed them,” provincial spokesman Shafiq Nang told. One policeman was wounded in the attack and taken to a nearby hospital, deputy police chief of Ghazni, Assadullah Safi, said while confirming the incident.
The incident comes after 16 policemen were killed in a series of attacks in the space of 24 hours last month, as security forces gear up to guard the election. Providing security for the vote is a key test for Afghan police and soldiers, with the bulk of 51,000 NATO combat troops due to pull out of the country by December after more than a decade fighting the Taliban. No one has claimed responsibility for Thursday´s attack, but roadside bombs are the Taliban´s weapon of choice in their war against the foreign and Afghan forces.