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Monday 21 January 2019 - 09:55

Taliban assault on Afghan military compound kills 12 troops, wounds 30

Story Code : 773310
Afghan security forces gather at the site of a truck bomb attack near a foreign compound in the capital, Kabul, on January 15, 2019. (Photo by AFP)
Afghan security forces gather at the site of a truck bomb attack near a foreign compound in the capital, Kabul, on January 15, 2019. (Photo by AFP)

Afghan provincial officials said the militants detonated an explosive-laden car at the  base in the southern province of Maidan Wardak on Monday.

Two gunmen, who tried to enter the compound after the bombing, were shot dead, said Mohebullah Sharifzai, spokesman for the provincial governor.

“A (second) car, packed with explosives, was also discovered and defused,” he said.

A number of the wounded are in critical condition and were transferred to the capital, Kabul, according to Salem Asgherkhail, head of the area’s public health department.

“Looking at the damage, the number of casualties may rise and our health team is still searching for victims,” he was quoted by Reuters as saying.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack through their spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid.

The assault followed an earlier attack on a convoy of security forces on Sunday, in the country’s eastern province of Logar, where the Taliban killed at least eight security forces and wounded several others.

The militants have stepped up attacks on security forces in recent months, though it has recently been engaged in talks with the US for finding a solution for the 17 year-old war in the country.

Taliban’s five-year rule over at least three quarters of Afghanistan came to an end in the wake of a US-led invasion in 2001, but the militant group still continues to flex its muscles against the government and the foreign troops remaining on Afghan soil.

The Taliban have strengthened their grip over the past three years. Having failed to end the militancy campaign, the US has now stepped up its political efforts to secure a truce with the group.

Washington says any settlement in Afghanistan must be between the government in Kabul and the Taliban. The militant group, however, have so far refused to deal directly with the government in Kabul, which they consider as “illegitimate.”
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