Militants attack on Indian consulate in western Afghanistan
Friday, May 23, 2014 - 01:39
May 23 - A handful of heavily armed insurgents launch a rocket propelled grenade and gun attack on the Indian consulate in Afghanistan's western city of Herat. Sarah Toms reports.
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Suicide bombers and armed militants launch an attack on the Indian consulate in Afghanistan in the early hours of the morning.
Indian staff managed to escape from the compound here in the western city Herat soon after the shooting began.
Until this attack, it was considered one of India's safest mission's in Afghanistan.... The consulate was guarded by a team of commandos from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police, while Afghan security forces formed another protective ring.
(SOUNDBITE) (Dari) COMMANDER OF POLICE RAPID RESPONSE UNIT, MOHAMMAD NASIR PASHTUN, SAYING:
"Perhaps five suicide bombers have entered a residential house and taken several families hostage. They wanted to storm the Indian consulate office but they were faced with our army's special unit."
The attackers were holed up in buildings overlooking the consulate, as security forces responded, caught up in a gun battle that lasted several hours.
(SOUNDBITE) (Dari) COMMANDER OF RAPID RESPONSE UNIT, MOHAMMAD NASIR PASHTUN; SAYING:
"The three suicide bombers who carried out this attack were killed by Afghan security forces. Only five security personnel are wounded."
It is not immediately clear who was behind the attack and no one has claimed responsibility so far.
But the Taliban often carries out assaults like this around the country.
These violent scenes highlight the dangers, as Afghanistan prepares to take over from foreign combat troops after 12 years of waging war against the Taliban
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