JALALABAD: At least nine people were killed on Saturday and dozens more were injured when three Taliban suicide bombers attacked a bank in eastern Afghanistan, officials and the insurgent group said.
The attack happened around noon local time in Jalalabad, a city in eastern Afghanistan's Nangarhar Province. "Three suicide terrorists today entered the bank in the city of Jalalabad and blew themselves up, resulting in 3 dead and 14 others wounded," a statement from the office of Afghan President Hamid Karzai said.
CNN, however, cited local officials as saying that at least nine people had been killed while more than 70 others were said to be wounded. It provided no details about their conditions.
"Shahid, Zara Jan and Jamal-ud-Din, three martyr-seeking Mujahideen of the Islamic Emirate who were armed with heavy and small arms and explosive vests got into the Kabul Bank's military section where the agents of NDS, a local spy agency of US-NATO invaders and the puppets of the [Afghan National Army (ANA)] were waiting to get their monthly pay and engaged in bloody firefight using heavy and small machine guns and hand grenades which left several dozens of puppets and spy agents of NDS killed or wounded," a Taliban spokesperson said through a statement.
The Taliban spokesperson added: "At about 2.00 p.m., Mujahideen using a remote-controlled device detonated an Auto Rickshaw stuffed with some 50 kg of explosives outside the bank which killed or wounded more than 10 puppet soldiers who had been surrounding the bank besides damaging the building."
The NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) did not report any fatalities among its service members, nor did it indicate its service members were involved. The Taliban is known to exaggerate statements about attacks.
"Insurgents blatantly targeted Afghan civilians in this truly vile attack on the people of Afghanistan," said Rear Admiral Vic Beck, ISAF Director of Public Affairs. "We hope the grieving hearts of those who have lost loved ones, as well as the injuries of those who survived the attack, heal quickly. We will continue working with the Afghan government in bringing those responsible to justice."
Meanwhile, the office of Karzai said in a statement that the president condemned the attack and added: "Once again, these [terrorists] showed they don't want the Afghan people to continue their peaceful lives."
(BNO NEWS )