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CNN LIVE EVENT/SPECIAL

America Strikes Back: Airstrikes Target Oil Storage in Kandahar

Aired October 23, 2001 - 06:06   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: And we're going to stay in that part of the world and check in with our Walter Rodgers who is standing by in Islamabad.

Walter.

WALTER RODGERS, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: Good morning.

Our sources in Taliban controlled areas in Afghanistan are now reporting that the area around Kandahar has been seriously bombed again this morning. Why Kandahar, because it remains the Taliban power base. It is also the headquarters of Mullah Mohammed Omar and he continues to play host to Osama bin Laden.

The same sources in Kandahar are telling CNN that the bombing raids today appear to be focusing on oil storage depots. The United States hitting an oil tanker there probably to try to deprive the Taliban military of any mobility, isolating them in their power centers. Like Kandahar, also isolating them in Kabul, also isolating them in Mazar-e-Sharif so that they can not regroup at a later plight.

Again our sources say that the oil storage depots were hit again in the Kandahar area. Fuel prices in Afghanistan we're told are going up now by 30 percent, again, to deprive the Taliban of any military mobility so they can't move their tanks and armored personnel carriers around the country.

Here in Pakistan, we have seen an attempt at rising street discontent. The Jamiat-e-Islam Party had scheduled a protest in Jacobabad where there is a Pakistani military air base that the U.S. has been allowed to use. The JI Party had hoped to protest in Jacobabad, but the Pakistani authorities have shut them down. The JI Party is a conservative Islam Party here. It has fallen into considerable disfavor after its leader Hosni Hussein Achmed recently called for the military to rise up and overthrow General Musharraf who heads this country.

That has not set well, so while the JI Party was able to put 20,000 people out on the streets of Raul (ph) Pindi on Sunday, the government appears to have shut them down. Many leaders arrested -- dozens of them arrested of the Jamiat-e-Islam Party and they are now, as I say, many leaders under house arrests. This, of course, indicates just how nervous the Pakistani authorities are about civil unrests in this country. There is not much public support for the U.S. bombing campaign against Afghanistan. Last night President Musharraf talking to Pakistani television, reassured the Pakistani people that the U.S. presence in Afghanistan would be short-lived and he reassured Pakistanis there are not many Americans here.

Daryn.

KAGAN: Walter, looks like we might be having a little bit of trouble with your satellite transmission there. So we're going to let you go and remind our viewers that for even more details on the refocused air sites in Afghanistan, you can go to CNN.com, AOL keyword there is CNN.

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