9 killed in suicide bombing outside Indian embassy in Afghanistan

Afghan soldiers secure site of suicide bombing near Indian embassy in Kabul. File Pic
Afghan soldiers secure site of suicide bombing near Indian embassy in Kabul. File Pic

At least nine people were killed and 22 others injured in suicide bombing outside Indian embassy in Afghanistan on Saturday.

Kabul, Aug 3/Nationalturk – A suicide bombing by insurgent outside Indian embassy in Afghanistan on Saturday killed at least nine people and injured 22 others.

A senior police official said a suicide bomber driving explosive laden car detonated the explosives near the Indian consulate in Jalalabad. “The powerful explosion shook the entire area and smashed window and glass panes of several buildings”.

He said the bombing was followed by gunfire.

The official said immediately after the bombing and gunfire, Afghan security forces laid siege around the area. “The explosive experts and security men were sensitizing the area”.

Sources said nine people were killed and over 22 injured in the suicide bombing. “Most of the victims were from a mosque, which is located close to Indian consulate. The injured have been hospitalised”.

They said the suicide bombing took place barely 15-20 metres away from the consulate. The building has suffered some damage.

Media reports quoting deputy police chief of Nangarhar province Masum Khan Hashimi as saying that police fired on the militants as they approached a checkpoint near the Indian consulate in Jalalabad. “It prompted one of them to set off their explosives-laden car”.

He said the two other attackers were also killed.

There were conflicting reports on the number of suicide bombers. While some officials said only one suicide bomber was involved, others said three or more suicide bombers were involved.

“The situation would be clear once preliminary investigation is completed,” a senior Afghanistan security official said.

All Indians in consulate safe: Indian official

Indian External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin tweeted that the ministry was tough with Afghan officials.

He said all Indian officials inside the consulate were safe.

Indian border guards ITBP, which is providing security to the consulate told Indian news channel CNN-IBN that according to the preliminary reports there was no damage to anyone in the Consulate.

 Taliban denies hand

Afghanistan’s main militant group Taliban has denied involvement in the suicide bombing.

“Our fighters have not carried out any attack in Jalalabad,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a text message to the media.

He said the Taliban movement does not claim the responsibility for this attack.

In past also, Indian officials and buildings have been targeted by militants in Afghanistan.

The Indian Embassy in Kabul was also bombed in 2008 and 2009, leaving 75 people dead.

Jalalabad is situated on the key route from the Pakistani border region. It has been the scene of repeated attacks in recent years.

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) compound in the city was hit on May 29. The Taliban had also denied its involvement in the ICRC attack.

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Faiz Ahmad / NationalTurk India News

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