At least six police officers and a civilian have been killed and 13 wounded in a suicide attack on the compound of a provincial governor in Western Afghanistan.
Four Taliban insurgents were killed during Thursday morning’s assault in the strategic province of Farah, the BBC reports.
One attacker blew himself up at the entrance to the compound, while another three fought their way inside armed with rocket-propelled grenades, hand grenades and small arms. They were shot dead in the hour-long gun battle than ensued.
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The province’s security chief told The New York Times that Farah’s governor, Mohammad Ghaus Malyaar, had been in his office at the time of the assault, and that the attackers had disguised themselves as Afghan police officers.
“The target was clearly the governor and his staff,” the official said. “Six police officers have been martyred, and an employee of the governor’s house was also killed.”
The 13 injured included five civilians – two women, a baby child, and two elderly people. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the strike, saying it was carried out by "martyrdom-seeking" fighters as part of the group's spring offensive, according to The Los Angeles Times.
Insurgents have staged similar attacks in recent weeks on government installations across Afghanistan, and Thursday’s assault comes less than three weeks after two Taliban attackers managed to infiltrate the governor’s compound in Kandahar province, before being killed in a half-hour battle.
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