(Reuters) – Afghanistan’s intelligence department has detained four Taliban insurgents behind a series of deadly attacks against foreign targets in the capital, a spokesman for the agency said on Saturday.
The National Department for Security (NDS) also arrested another Taliban group which planned to stage attacks in Kabul in coming days, Saeed Ansari told reporters.
The first group was involved in five suicide attacks against foreigners in the city, including on the Indian embassy last year and another in February on a guest house used by Indian nationals. Scores of people, many of them Afghans, were killed.
The attacks were planned from Pakistan, where the Taliban have sanctuary, Ansari said.
“This group either managed to flee or went into hiding, but the vigilant officials of the NDS, with the help of people, managed to arrest them,” he said.
The second group consisted of six insurgents who carried out attacks against Afghan and foreign forces on a highway south of Kabul and planned further raids, including suicide bombings. Two of those held were clerics at local mosques in Kabul province.
NDS officials also seized around 450 kgs (1,000 pounds) of explosive materials during a raid against the group which was living in house on the outskirts of Kabul.
Removed from power in a U.S.-led invasion in 2001, the Taliban have made a comeback in recent years, despite the presence of nearly 150,000 foreign troops.
(Reporting by Sayed Salahuddin; Editing by David Fox)