9 killed inside Afghan complex
Two bombs hidden in a motorcycle and a car exploded inside an elite gated community linked to the family of Afghan President Hamid Karzai on Friday evening, killing at least nine people and wounding more than 70 near the southern city of Kandahar, an official said.
The blasts happened inside Aino Mina, a housing complex on the northern outskirts of the city that was developed in part by Mahmood Karzai, the president’s younger brother.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but striking inside a powerful symbol of wealth and influence would be a publicity coup for the Taliban insurgency.
Military sex abuse
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Friday ordered the military to recertify all 25,000 people involved in programs designed to prevent and respond to sexual assault, an acknowledgement that assaults have escalated beyond the Pentagon’s control.
He said this step, which also applies to the military’s approximately 19,000 recruiters and must be completed by July 1, is one among many that will be taken to fix the problem of sexual abuse and sexual harassment within every branch of the military.
At a news conference with Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Hagel said he believes alcohol use is “a very big factor” in many sexual assault and sexual harassment cases, but there are many pieces to the problem.
Feds: More time needed to indict bombing suspect
Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev won’t be indicted within the 30-day period prescribed under the Federal Speedy Trial Act, but prosecutors said Friday they would ask for more time.
Sunday marks 30 days since Tsarnaev was arrested after the April 15 twin bombings that killed three people and injured more than 260.
U.S. Attorney Carmen Ortiz’s office did not specify the exception under which they would seek more time, but those available to prosecutors include delays related to the defendant’s physical capacity. Tsarnaev remains in a prison hospital after being badly wounded in a gunbattle with police before his arrest.
Earlier Friday, a judge denied a request from Tsarnaev’s attorneys that they be allowed to take periodic photos of the 19-year-old to document “his evolving mental and physical state” and whether his statements to authorities after his arrest were made voluntarily.
At least 60 injured in train collision
Public safety officials in Connecticut say about 60 people have been hurt after two commuter trains collided outside New York City. Five of those injuries were deemed serious.
No fatalities were reported after Friday evening’s collision near Fairfield on the Metro-North Railroad.
The rail line referred to it in a news release as a “major derailment.”
A spokesman for public-safety officials in nearby Bridgeport said about 250 people were on the two trains that collided after one derailed.