Suicide bomb targets government office in east Afghanistan

KABUL, AFGHANISTAN (AP) — Militants attempted to storm a government office in a provincial capital of eastern Afghanistan yesterday, setting off a suicide bombing and running gun battle with security forces, Afghan officials said.

The attack in Nangarhar province comes after the Taleban launched two separate suicide attacks a day earlier — one targetting President Ashraf Ghani’s election rally and a second in the centre of the Afghan capital — killing at least 48 people and wounding scores more, in the deadliest single day since a peace agreement with Taleban insurgents was declared dead.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for yesterday’s attack, but both Taleban and Islamic State (IS) group are active in eastern Afghanistan.

Spokesman for the Governor Attahullah Khogyani said that the attack took place in Jalalabad, the province’s capital.

A spokesman for the province’s Public Health Department Gulzada Snagar said that so far at least 10 wounded people had been taken to hospital.

“There is one woman and a small child among those wounded,” said Sangar.

An unknown number of attackers stormed into the building in the aftermath of the suicide bombing, and a gun battle is ongoing with security forces.

The violence comes as Afghanistan prepares for presidential elections on September 28, a vote the Taleban vehemently oppose. The insurgent group has

warned Afghans not to vote in the election and said their fighters would target election campaigns as well as polling stations.

Afghan police inspect the site of a suicide attack, in northern Parwan province. PHOTO: AP