Kabul, August 8, 2015: From a barrage of bombings in Kabul, fifteen more casualtiesÂ were confirmed Saturday, taking the toll to 51 in the deadliest day for the city in years as Afghanistan battles an escalating Taliban insurgency.
The explosions on Friday, which destroyedÂ buildings and with hundreds of casualties inÂ hospitals on Kabul, were the first major militant assaults Â since the announcement of Taliban leader Mullah Omar’s demise.
In the middle ofÂ faltering peace process and the potency of the Taliban insurgency, the attacks underscored the country’s changingÂ security situation, despite it being rivenÂ by growing internal divisions.
Just after midnight on Friday, in the first attack, a powerful truck bomb tore through the center of Kabul, killing 15 civilians and injuringÂ 240 others.
Less than 24 hours later, at the entrance of Kabul Police Academy 27 cadets and civilians were killed when a suicide bomber dressed in police uniform blew himself up .
When Camp Integrity, a US special forces base in Kabul, came under attack late Friday, explosions and gunfire also erupted, killing nine people, including a NATO service member.
The Taliban separatedÂ themselves from the truck bombing which struck near a Kabul military baseÂ whichÂ they usually do in attacks that result in mass civilian casualties but they claimed responsibility for both other attacks, which marked a serious breach of security at a premier training institute for Afghan forces and a foreign coalition facility.
When more than 50 people were killed in a suicide attack during the Shiite holy day of Ashura, the three bombingÂ made Friday the deadliest 24 hours in Kabul afterÂ December 2011 .
The UN mission in Afghanistan said in a statement,”The Afghan people are resilient, but the suffering caused by attacks in terms of civilian deaths, injuries, and the loss of family members, is extreme, irreversible and unjustifiable”
Under Â a new Taliban leadership, the large number of killing of peopleÂ highlighted the risk of a bloodier insurgency as Afghan forces face their first summer fighting season without the full support of NATO, which ended its combat mission in December.
After the insurgents confirmed the death of longtime leader Mullah Omar, Friday’s bombings were the first seriousÂ attacks since Mullah Akhtar Mansour was named as the new Taliban chief last week in an acrimonious power transition.
The rapidlyÂ increasingÂ violence demonstrates Mullah Mansour’s attempt to boost his image among Taliban cadres and drive attention away from internal splitsÂ over his leadership, experts say.
Security analyst Abdul Hadi Khaled said,” The new wave of attacks is a tactic by the Taliban’s new leadership to show they are capable, potent and operational,” said.