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Tipsheet

Latest Afghanistan Trend: Children Suicide Bombers?

This will turn your stomach -- the National Journal reports that the "Taliban have begun using child suicide bombers in eastern Afghanistan" and said that three boys under 14 were arrested last month trying to cross the border into Afghanistan from (where else?) Pakistan:

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"The three boys ....admitted that they had been sent into the country to carry out suicide attacks, the official said. More than two dozen would-be child bombers are in Afghan custody, with most arrested in eastern Afghanistan, the official said.

According to the article, a 12-year-old boy was also responsible for the suicide bombing that killed four people and hurt a dozen others. The trend appears a response to American success:

Maj. Gen. Dan Allyn, the top American commander in eastern Afghanistan, told National Journal the Taliban is using female and child suicide bombers to reverse recent American and Afghan gains in the region.

“We’re seeing a much more ruthless attack against the population of Afghanistan by the insurgent groups, including a willingness to use children and women as suicide bombers, which is new for Afghanistan,” Allyn, who runs NATO’s Regional Command-East, said in an interview.

It is interesting to note that Allyn says the women-children suicide bombing is new for Afghanistan.

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