Militants attack Kabul election office

Posted: March 27, 2014 in Current Affairs, World Affairs
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KABUL: Militants launched a gun and suicide attack on an Afghan election commission office in Kabul on Tuesday, police said, less than two weeks before the presidential poll.

The Taliban have vowed a campaign of violence to disrupt the ballot on April 5, urging their fighters to attack polling staff, voters and security forces in the run-up to election day.

Blasts were heard at an Independent Election Commission (IEC) office in the western Darulaman area of the Afghan capital, close to the home of Ashraf Ghani, who is seen as a frontrunner in the race to succeed President Hamid Karzai.

“At around 11:35 am a suicide bomber blew himself up at the gate of an IEC regional office in Darulaman, and then several other attackers entered the building,” Kabul police spokesman Hashmat Estanakzai said.

Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said on Twitter that two civilians wounded in the attack had been taken to hospital.

Witness Ahmad Sharif, a government employee, said he heard two loud explosions followed by gunfire, and an AFP photographer said firing, at times heavy, was still going on more than an hour after the attack began.

A member of Ghani’s campaign team said the former World Bank economist was out of Kabul at the time, campaigning in the eastern province of Paktia.

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