Dissidents Attack Kabul

A DISSIDENT mujahideen group launched its heaviest rocket bombardment on Kabul since the Afghan capital fell to the guerrillas in April, but the government said it had repulsed the offensive yesterday.

More than 650 rockets rained down on Kabul in the first 90 minutes of the assault, which began at first light from positions held by the radical Hezb-e-Islami party to the south of the city, one military expert said.

The unusual dawn attack could herald the start of the radical fundamentalist party's long-awaited offensive against the city, diplomats said.

A Defense Ministry source said the Hezb-e-Islami under its fundamentalist chief Gulbuddin Hekmatyar had tried to advance on the city and had been repelled by pro-government forces.

The three-month-old coalition Islamic government had "adequate resources" to deal with the threat by the dissident mujahideen leader, he said.

Mr. Hekmatyar's rebels, once heavily financed by the United States and Saudi Arabia, are the best armed of the guerrilla groups.

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