Nine Killed In Taliban Suicide Car Bombing In Eastern Afghanistan
By RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan May 18, 2020
A Taliban car-bomb attack targeting an intelligence base in eastern Afghanistan with a stolen military Humvee killed at least nine people and wounded dozens on May 18.
Arif Noori, spokesman for the provincial governor in eastern Ghazni Province, said two suicide bombers detonated the stolen vehicle filled with explosives near the entrance to the base.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the incident killed or wounded "tens" of special forces.
An official in the Ghazni Province administration, Wahidullah Jumazada, said the attack "targeted the National Directorate of Security unit in Ghazni city."
Jumazada put the death total at nine, saying both of the attackers were among the dead.
He and other officials put the number of injured at at least 40.
"Most of the victims are intelligence personnel," Jumazada added.
The attack comes a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and his political rival, Abdullah Abdullah, reached a power-sharing agreement ending a months-long political feud following disputed elections in September 2019.
The political deal overcomes one hurdle preventing Kabul from launching direct talks with the Taliban as part of a fragile U.S.-brokered peace effort.
The Taliban has ramped up attacks in recent weeks despite a pledge to reduce violence, while Islamic State militants also continue targeting Afghan security forces and civilians.
On May 14, the Taliban detonated a truck close to a military building in Gardez city in southeastern Paktia Province, leaving five dead and 20 injured, including military personnel and civilians.
Last week, the Taliban attacked a military checkpoint in the Alishang district of eastern Laghman Province that left dozens dead or wounded.
The Taliban has said the attacks are a response to Ghani's ordering Afghan forces to go on the offensive against the militant group.
With reporting by AFP and AP
Copyright (c) 2020. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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