Saturday, April 20, 2019

At least seven dead as attackers storm Afghan ministry building - The Guardian

Suicide attackers stormed the Afghan ministry of communications on Saturday, killing at least seven people. The assault came the day after the collapse of long-anticipated peace talks between the Taliban and a broad spectrum of their Afghan opponents.

The attack also ended weeks of relative calm in the Afghan capital. Militants dressed in Afghan security forces uniforms targeted one of the tallest buildings in Kabul, next to the prestigious Serena hotel, which has been hit by insurgent attacks several times previously.

Three civilians and four policemen were killed in several hours of fighting as gunfire and blasts echoed through Kabul’s normally busy central hub, and security forces evacuated and sealed off streets. Eight other people were injured including several women.

“I was near the shrine when I saw four armed men with very new uniforms,” said Shahab Baloch, 30, an employee of a private finance company who narrowly escaped the attack when passing through the area.

“They had Kalashnikovs and two of them had something else in their hands. I took a couple more steps then there was an explosion, with dust everywhere so I couldn’t see anything. I lay behind some blast barriers and the gunfire started.”

Television images showed people fleeing the high-rise and nearby buildings, some scrambling out of windows on the lower floors of the 18-storey tower.

In total, nearly 2,000 people were evacuated safely from the ministry of communications, the ministry of culture and information and a government statistics office, interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said.

A suicide bomber launched the attack by blowing himself up outside the communications ministry, according to police chief Gen Sayed Mohammad Roshandil.

That blast cleared the way for four gunmen to enter the heavily guarded government compound and the ministry buildings, sparking a siege that lasted several hours, Associated Press reported. - Read More

At least seven dead as attackers storm Afghan ministry building ...


Post a Comment

<< Home