Taliban launch spate of attacks in Afghanistan

The attacks started with an explosion near the provincial governor’s compound in the heart of the city and several other blasts were later heard in other areas in what appeared to be coordinated attacks, a Reuters witness said.

Shooting erupted after the first explosion and the Reuters witness said he could see gunmen firing from a five-storey shopping mall towards the governor’s compound, from where security forces returned fire as helicopters circled overhead.

“The Taliban are attacking the governor’s compound and the fighting is still ongoing,” Zalmay Ayoubi, spokesman for Kandahar Governor Tooryalai Wesa,  said from inside the heavily guarded compound.

Ayoubi said six suicide bombers had detonated their explosives at several government targets across the city, including a compound belonging to the intelligence service, a foreign special forces base and Afghan police checkpoints. Gunfights between the militants and security forces were still going in at least three locations, Ayoubi said, and 24 people had so far been wounded.

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