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Exclusive interview: Story of a Taliban bomb maker

08-04-2011 09:05 BJT

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Taliban-led insurgents in Afghanistan have shifted their tactics from fighting NATO forces in the countryside, to targeting cities with bombs and assassinations.

CCTV's Yama Wolasmal has been given exclusive access to one of the Taliban's top bomb makers in the southern city of Kandahar. He gives an insight into how he was recruited, and how he carries out his attacks.

He looks like any other Afghan teenager. But while his contemporaries were busy attending school or university, Farid Ahmad was busy assembling car bombs for the Taliban.

Farid Ahmad said, "My family said: Don't go with these people and destroy your peaceful life. But nobody could talk me out of the bomb making, which I thought was my religious duty."

Barely 18, Farid Ahmad said he joined the fight against foreign troops and Afghan authorities at the tender age of 15, when a Taliban recruiter approached him in his village.

CCTV's Yama Wolasmal(R) has been given exclusive access to one of the Taliban's top bomb makers in the southern city of Kandahar. He gives an insight into how he was recruited, and how he carries out his attacks.

Farid Ahmad said, "I had a good life, a small shop where I was making more than enough money. I even used to help the poor. But they told me Islam obliged me to join their fight. "

After fighting on the shifting frontlines on the Afghan country side, Farid says he was sent to Pakistan. He was selected to become the Taliban's top bomb maker in Kandahar.

Farid Ahmad said, "I packed 1 kg of explosives in plastic bags, before placing them inside the car doors and seats. Then I connected the detonator which was a switch in cars stereo system. Each car was ladened with 200 kg of explosives".

According to the NDS, Afghan intelligence service, Farid was part of a ring of insurgents responsible for 25 car bombings in Kandahar alone. The NDS is notorious for torturing confessions out of former insurgent prisoners like Farid. But the shop-keeper turned bomb maker says he not afraid of being tortured or sentenced to death for his crimes.

"I am not afraid of anyone in this room. I will face my faith like a man. But believe me, I have cried in my prison cell, before God, pleading him to punish the people who manipulated me in to killing innocent people," said Farid Ahmad.

CCTV's Yama Wolasmal(R)

We ask the young insurgent fighter what he feels about the people who manipulated him. Farid answers with an emotional appeal to his former comrades.

Farid Ahmad said, "I just want to say: please don't brainwash more people. Stop manipulating young men. I just hope that God punishes these people on the Day of Judgment."

In the two months since Farid was arrested, police say no car bombs have exploded in Kandahar city. For now the people of this war-torn city are safe. But the insurgents have a pool of desperate, unemployed young men to choose from. Soon another teenager will replace Farid. Soon another carbomb will rip through the city of Kandahar.

Farid Ahmad, Taliban bomb maker


Interview: Afghan governor Gulab Mangal on transition process

The governor of Helmand province, Gulab Mangal, talks to CCTV correspondent Yama Wolasmal about the ongoing transition process, the biggest challenges and the progress made in his province.

Meet Gulab Mangal, the governor of the southern Helmand province. A man who has had attempts on his life than any other government official in Afghanistan, including president Karzai.

Gulab Mangal, the governor of the southern Helmand province

Editor:Liu Fang |Source: CNTV.CN

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