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Afghan Authorities Lock Down Kabul after Deadly Protest | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Protesters throw stones at security forces in Kabul on Friday. (AP)

Streets in the center of the Afghan capital Kabul were blocked on Saturday as a demonstration that left several people dead entered a second day.

Authorities tried to prevent a repeat of Friday’s protest that degenerated into clashes between demonstrators demanding more security in the capital and police.

The street clashes during which police fired live rounds to disperse hundreds of stone-throwing demonstrators left four people dead.

Public anger has mounted after an explosives-laden sewage tanker detonated in Kabul’s diplomatic quarter on Wednesday, killing 90 people and wounding hundreds of others in the deadliest attack in the Afghan capital since 2001.

A small group of protesters remained on Saturday near the presidential palace and the blast site in the center of the town, sheltering from the sun in open tents.

But otherwise security authorities in Kabul banned protests and demonstrations, citing the risk of attacks on large gatherings of people.

Although Saturday is a normal working day in Afghanistan, large parts of the city were blocked off, with armed checkpoints set up and armored vehicles patrolling the streets.

The unrest has heaped pressure on the government of President Ashraf Ghani which has faced increasing public anger over its inability to ensure security in the capital following a string of high profile suicide attacks.

In the first three months of the year at least 715 civilians were killed, after almost 3,500 in 2016, the deadliest year on record for Afghan civilians.