Militants attempted to storm a government office in a provincial capital of eastern Afghanistan Wednesday, setting off a suicide bombing and running gun battle with security forces, Afghan officials said.
The attack in Nangarhar province comes after the Taliban launched two separate suicide attacks a day earlier — one targeting President Ashraf Ghani’s election rally and a second in the center of the Afghan capital — killing at least 48 people and wounding scores more, in the deadliest single day since a peace agreement with Taliban insurgents was declared dead.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for Wednesday’s attack, but both Taliban and Islamic State group are active in eastern Afghanistan. Attahullah Khogyani, spokesman for the governor, said that the attack took place in Jalalabad, the province’s capital.
A spokesman for the province’s public health department, Gulzada Snagar, said that so far at least 10 wounded people had been taken to hospital. “There is one woman and a small child among those wounded,” said Sangar.
An unknown number of attackers stormed into the building in the aftermath of the suicide bombing, and a gun battle is ongoing with security forces.
The violence comes as Afghanistan prepares for presidential elections on Sept. 28, a vote the Taliban vehemently oppose. The insurgent group has warned Afghans not to vote in the election and said their fighters would target election campaigns as well as polling stations.