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Ten Killed As Taliban Militants Storm Afghan Court


Afghan security personnel gather as the body of an insurgent lies at the entrance of the Ghazni court.

Taliban militants have stormed a court in an eastern Afghan province, sparking a clash with police that left 10 dead, including five civilians and a policeman.

The Interior Ministry said “four terrorists” launched the attack on June 1 in the city of Ghazni, the capital of the eastern province of Ghazni.

A spokesman for the provincial governor said a suicide bomber first blew himself at the court’s entrance, after which three other attackers stormed the building.

The Interior Ministry said a firefight ensued and the three other attackers were shot and killed by the security forces.

According to the AP, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

The militants had vowed revenge for the hanging on May 8 of six Taliban prisoners convicted of terrorism offenses, as part of a tougher security policy in retaliation for an April suicide attack in Kabul in which 64 people were killed.

Elsewhere, a district police chief was killed on June 1 when his vehicle struck a roadside bomb in northern Balkh Province. The Taliban claimed responsibility for that attack, as well.

On May 31, Taliban militants attacked several buses on a road in northern Kunduz Province, killing 13 passengers and taking 20 others hostage. More than 140 passengers were released soon after the ambush.

On June 1, officials said security forces had freed 12 hostages and were working to secure the release of the remaining eight.

Based on reporting by RFE/RL's Radio Free Afghanistan, AP, and Reuters