The Afghanistan president-led National Security Council (NSC) accused “foreign intelligence services” of being responsible for the attack on a Kabul restaurant frequented by foreigners that left 21 people dead, including three Americans.
According to AFP, a Jan. 19 statement from Afghan president Hamid Karzai’s palace said, “The NSC said such sophisticated and complex attacks are not the work of the ordinary Taliban, and said without doubt foreign intelligence services beyond the border are behind such bloody attacks.”
AFP added that the “foreign intelligence services” accusation was an “apparent reference to Pakistan.”
The Taliban has already claimed responsibility for the Jan. 17 attack that killed 21 people, including eight Afghans and 13 foreigners. Among the 13 foreigners were three American citizens.
Civilians from Britain, Canada, Russia, Lebanon, Pakistan, Malaysia, and Denmark were also killed in the assault.
The Jan. 17 attack began when a suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance of the restaurant in Kabul. That was followed by two gunmen bursting into the establishment and spraying bullets on everyone in sight.
The assault has been described as the deadliest Taliban attack against foreign civilians in the course of the Afghanistan war, which started more than 12 years ago on October 7, 2001.
Security measures and personnel in Kabul are being scrutinized in response to the fatal incident.