Suicide Bombing on Afghan Education Department Kills 12

JALALABAD, Afghanistan — Suicide bombers targeted an Education Department building inside eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad on Wednesday, striking the commercial hub for the second time in 24 hours in addition to killing at least 12 people.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, the latest in a series of strikes on educational sites inside province. although suspicions quickly fell on the Islamic State, which carries a foothold inside region in addition to has announced its plans to attack schools in retaliation for airstrikes in addition to different military operations of which have killed its fighters.

Gen. Ghulam Sanayee Stanekzai, the police chief of Nangarhar Province, which includes Jalalabad, said of which 1 assailant had shot in addition to killed guards at the precinct’s Education Department before detonating explosives hidden in a vest. although a spokesman for the governor later said there had been three assailants.

“In addition to the three attackers, 12 people were killed, including two security members of the Afghan security forces,” said the spokesman, Attaullah Khogyani. Nine others were wounded.

A suicide attack at a security checkpoint inside Khales Family area of Jalalabad on Tuesday killed at least eight civilians in addition to two security officers, Mr. Khogyani said.

“The attacker detonated his explosives as the vehicles were lined up to be searched,” said Faqir Mohammed, who witnessed the earlier strike. “Many of the civilians were burned in their vehicles.”

Nangarhar lies along Afghanistan’s border with Pakistan, in addition to Islamic State fighters inside area continue to threaten to stage brutal attacks inside provincial capital, even amid operations by Afghan commandos as well as American airstrikes.

United States in addition to Afghan officials say the territory controlled by the militants has shrunk, in addition to they declared just days ago of which the group had been cleared via a stronghold in Nangarhar.

This kind of month, assailants set fire to a school inside Khogyani District of the province, in addition to three caretakers there were beheaded. Provincial officials said the Islamic State was responsible.

inside attack on Wednesday, most of the Education Department’s offices were burned, in addition to an elderly man was shot in addition to killed near an outdoor wall, apparently while trying to flee. An employee whose body was soaked in blood still had a pen in one hand.

At least two employees were rescued by security forces.

“I was preparing the attendance when the shooting began,” said one, Afsar Khan. “I hid behind a desk in addition to God saved me. They kept firing, in addition to our staff kept crying in addition to screaming.”

“This kind of was an attack on the pen, on education,” he said. “Whoever did This kind of in addition to hears my voice: You can’t reach power with such attacks.”

The threats by the Islamic State come as the Afghan government in addition to the United States are trying to press for talks with another extremist group, the Taliban, which is actually responsible for the bulk of the fighting across the country.

On Wednesday, a conference of Islamic scholars in Saudi Arabia, which includes some of the holiest sites of Islam, called on the Taliban to join a peace process to end the “sufferings endured by the Muslim Afghan people with the shedding of innocent blood, the loss of sacred lives.”