Afghan governor escapes attack, 2 bodyguards killed

Written by: IANS
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Kabul, June 20: An Afghan provincial governor on Friday escaped an ambush by gunmen in the country's northern Balkh province in which two of his bodyguards were killed, authorities said.

"Gunmen wearing police uniform fired on General Juma Khan Hamdard's motorcade, leaving two bodyguards dead and three guards wounded on the outskirts of provincial capital Mazar-i-Sharif city late Friday morning," a security source told Xinhua.

Hamdard, who comes from Balkh province, serves as the governor of eastern Paktiya province.

The gunfight lasted for one hour, the source said, adding an investigation has been launched into the case.

The casualties on the side of the attackers remained unclear.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet.

The Taliban-led insurgency has been rampant since the militant group launched an annual rebel offensive against Afghan government forces and more than 51,000 NATO-led troops stationed in the country in mid-May.

The Taliban urged civilians to stay away from official gatherings, military convoys and centres regarded as the legitimate targets by militants besides it warned people not to support the government and foreign troops.

Earlier Friday, one child was killed and five members of the same family were wounded when a Taliban mortar shell hit a house in Mohmandara district of eastern Nangarhar province.


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