Published: Thu, May 31, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

Afghan forces end ISIL attack on ministry in Kabul

Afghan forces end ISIL attack on ministry in Kabul

Militants launched a gun and bomb attack on the interior ministry in Kabul on Wednesday, killing a policeman in the latest chilling demonstration of their ability to strike at the heart of the Afghan capital.

Special forces rushed to the scene after the attackers detonated what police said was a vehicle bomb at the first checkpoint leading to the ministry, then tried to battle their way inside.

Officials inside the ministry said the attackers could not breach key buildings as they are located far from the main entrance and there is a wide flat space inside the compound, helping Afghan forces to subdue the attack quickly.

In eastern Logar province, suicide bombers attacked a police station in the morning, killing at least three police officers, including the station's commander and the deputy director of traffic police for the provincial capital, Pul-e Alam, local media reported.

The Taliban and the Afghan IS affiliate have both carried out scores of attacks, mainly targeting security forces and the country's Shiite minority, that have killed hundreds of people in recent years.

A senior ministry official said one attacker blew himself up inside the compound and another was resisting from a watchtower as a plume of dust and smoke rose over the sprawling site.

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The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) group claimed responsibility for the attack.

Omar Zwak, a spokesman for Helmand's governor, said they will soon join their families but were still being held by Afghan forces. While saying the U.S. attack had disrupted the Taliban network in Helmand province, including its drug trafficking, Nicholson stopped short of saying the killing of dozens of insurgent commanders would have a decisive impact on the war. "The police easily, in 10 or 15 minutes, killed all three of them".

"The latest violence coincided with a US government report that found few signs of progress in Afghanistan this year, with fighting spreading and hundreds of casualties from militant attacks".

He said the attackers set off a suicide vehicle bomb at the entrance to the station before three suicide bombers tried to enter.

Twelve other people, including four police officers and eight civilians, were wounded in the attack, said provincial police chief Mohmmad Abdali.

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