Suicide Bombers Storm Afghan Government Building

Posted January 10th, 2012 at 10:10 am (UTC-5)
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Suicide bombers have stormed a government building in eastern Afghanistan, killing at least seven people.

Tuesday's attack took place in Sharan, the provincial capital of Paktika province.

The interior ministry says three bombers tried to take over the building, which houses the government communications office. Officials had earlier put the number of attackers at four.

Two bombers detonated their explosives during a gun battle. The third was gunned down by police. Three police officers and four government employees were killed in the siege that lasted several hours.

Two police officers and a civilian were wounded.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack. The militants had reportedly planned to target an intelligence office near the building that was attacked.

Afghanistan's Paktika province shares a porous and ill-defined border with Pakistan and is one of the main routes for Taliban militants to infiltrate eastern Afghanistan from their sanctuaries across the border.

Elsewhere in the east, authorities say a blast in Kunar province killed at least two Afghan soldiers. At least six Afghan troops and a civilian were wounded in Tuesday's attack.

Separately, NATO and Afghan forces worked together Tuesday to capture several suspected Taliban agents in operations across Afghanistan. NATO said a joint Afghan and coalition raid in Balkh province resulted in the deaths of seven suspected insurgents and the capture of 30 others.