KABUL: A four-hour long gunbattle between Afghan security forces and gunmen holed up near the Pakistani consulate in the eastern city of Jalalabad has come to an end after all attackers were killed, Afghanistan’s Tolo News reported.
The self styled Islamic State group claimed the attack later today in a statement conveyed to Reuters,
Tolo News reported that a consulate staff member, three children and seven police officials are also among those injured, but Foreign Office Spokesman Qazi Khalilullah contended, “All Pakistanis working at the Pakistani consulate in Jalalabad are safe. No one has been injured.
An interior ministry statement said a “group of terrorists targeted a police vehicle near the Pakistan consulate at 8:50am”, while local officials claim the consulate itself was attacked, Tolo News said.
Attaullah Khogyani, a spokesman for the provincial governor, earlier said a suicide bomber had tried to join a queue of people seeking visas to Pakistan and blew himself up after being prevented from entering the building.
Witnesses said they heard heavy gunfire and a series of explosions. Three attackers had barricaded themselves inside a house near the consulate and engaged in a gunbattle with security forces, officials said.
Residents and children from a nearby school were evacuated.
Afghan officials sealed off the area around the consulate ─ which is located close to the Indian and Iranian diplomatic missions ─ and said a probe into the attack had been initiated.
Pakistan strongly condemned and requested government of Afghanistan to thoroughly investigate this incident and bring the culprits to book.
According to a press release issued from foreign office, Paksitan also requested Afghan government to share details of the investigation with Pakistani officials.
The foreign office confirmed that officials of the Consulate General are safe. Only one official was slightly injured by a broken glass.
The Government of Afghanistan has also been requested to ensure safety and security of Pakistan Missions in Afghanistan and the country’s officials working there.