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Kabul police chief fired as surge in attacks hit Afghan capital

Published: Updated:

Kabul’s police chief has been fired, the Afghan interior ministry said Sunday, following a mortar attack that hit the presidential palace last week and an uptick in small-scale bombings in the nation’s capital.

Interior ministry spokesman Tareq Arian told AFP that authorities dismissed Ammanullah Wahidi -- who oversaw security in Kabul and surrounding districts -- and at least two other mid-ranking security officials over “the recent rise in insecurity” in the capital.

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Another top security official confirmed Wahidi’s removal.

“The people are worried and the president is upset over these attacks,” the official told AFP on the condition of anonymity. “There will be more changes in the security leadership of Kabul soon.”

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During Independence Day celebrations on Tuesday, at least three people were killed and 19 injured after more than a dozen mortars were fired at the city’s heavily fortified green zone, home to a number of foreign embassies along with high-profile government installations.

The palace was hit, and several members of the president’s elite security detail were among the injured.

The attack came as the city has been rocked by a series of attacks using sticky bombs -- homemade devices attached to vehicles with magnets that are regularly used to target security forces.