Sunday 23 November 2014

Karzai wants suicide bomb girl returned to her family

Published 08/01/2014 | 02:30

Hamid Karzai

Hamid Karzai, the Afghan president, has said a young girl allegedly pressured by her brother to carry out a suicide attack should be returned to her family.

The 10-year-old girl allegedly given a bomb vest and ordered to carry out a suicide attack by an older brother should be returned to live with her family, Mr Karzai said.

The Afghan president told his officials to get assurances from local leaders that the girl, called Spogmai, would not be harmed by her relatives.

Police officials said the girl was arrested when she turned herself in on the way to detonating at a border police checkpoint in southern Helmand province.

She had been ordered to attack police in Khan Neshin district by her brother, a local Taliban commander called Zahir, they said.

Taliban militants have long been accused of using young boys for suicide attacks, but reports of using girls are much rarer.

Spogmai said she had been ordered by her brother to wade across a river to get to her target. At the last minute she decided not to go through with it.

"I was tired of my stepmother. My brother told me to wear the black vest, go to the police checkpoint and press the button," she told reporters.

"I went past a river and decided to drop the vest. My brother fled and police arrested me." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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