A riot broke out during a student protest at Kabul’s Polytechnic University at around 07:45 (local time) on Wednesday, June 7, prompting security forces to close roads to contain the situation. Other protests, related to the May 31 terrorist attack, are ongoing in the capital city, causing further traffic disruptions.
As of around 13:00, the following areas were heavily congested due to roadblocks erected by protesters: Karti Parwan, Bagh Bala, Massoud Square, and Abdul Haq Square. The following roads were also reported closed: Bibi Mahru, Ebn-e-Sina Road, Wazir-Akbar Khan Road, Shir Ali Khan Road, Sulh Road, and the portion of the Kabul-Nangarhar Highway between Abdul Haq Square and Pashtunistan Square.
The holy month of Ramadan is currently ongoing in Afghanistan (May 26 to June 25) and has been marred by deadly terrorist attacks. On May 31, a bomb, concealed in a tank of water deliver lorry killed more than 150 people and wounded at least 400 others in Kabul. The detonation of around 1500 kg (3300 lb) of explosives took place near the German Embassy, in the center of Kabul’s diplomatic quarter and the highly secured Green Zone. The attack is potentially the deadliest terrorist incident to hit the country in the past decade. Another attack followed on June 3, during the funeral for some of the May 31 victims. As many as 20 people were killed and dozens others injured. The Taliban has denied responsibility for both bombings. The Afghan intelligence services believe Haqqani - an Islamic State (IS)-affiliated insurgent group based in Afghanistan and suspected of having ties with Pakistan - to be responsible.
The Taliban have, however, had threatened to attack Kabul if Afghan President Ashraf Ghani went forward with his decree, made on June 1, to hang 11 Taliban and Haqqani prisoners.
As always, due to major security concerns, individuals throughout Afghanistan are urged to keep a safe distance from large gatherings, military convoys, government buildings, and crowded urban areas. Many Western governments advise their citizens against travel to the country due to the high threat of kidnapping and terrorism, including frequent attacks against Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, local civilians and politicians, and individuals working in the humanitarian and reconstruction fields. Travel to the country should only be undertaken with proper security protocols in place.
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