10 killed in Taliban siege of Afghan court complex

Published April 10, 2015
An Afghan official investigates inside of court a day after a Taliban attack in Mazar-i-Sharif ─ Reuters
An Afghan official investigates inside of court a day after a Taliban attack in Mazar-i-Sharif ─ Reuters
An Afghan policeman stands guard outside of court a day after a Taliban attack, in Mazar-i-Sharif ─ Reuters
An Afghan policeman stands guard outside of court a day after a Taliban attack, in Mazar-i-Sharif ─ Reuters
An Afghan security personnel walks past damaged cars in front of a court complex following a suicide attack in Mazar-i-sharif ─ AFP
An Afghan security personnel walks past damaged cars in front of a court complex following a suicide attack in Mazar-i-sharif ─ AFP
Mazar-i-Sharif: Security personnel arrive at the court complex after the attack.—AFP
Mazar-i-Sharif: Security personnel arrive at the court complex after the attack.—AFP

MAZAR-I-SHARIF: At least 10 people died on Thursday when Taliban militants wearing military uniforms mounted a six-hour gun and grenade siege on a court complex in northern Afghanistan, in an assault highlighting the country’s fragile security situation.

The attack in the usually tranquil city of Mazar-i-Sharif occurred just before the start of the Taliban’s traditional spring offensive, set to be the first fighting season when Afghan security forces battle militants without full Nato support.

Explosions rang out as the assailants lobbed grenades and exchanged gunfire with Afghan security forces, setting ablaze one of the buildings in the compound, according to officials and a reporter at the scene.

Dozens of people were left wounded, with reports emerging of blood shortages in hospitals and urgent appeals for donors circulating on social media.

“Around noon four assailants dressed in military uniforms breached the main gate of the Appeals Court in Mazar-i-Sharif and started firing gunshots and throwing hand grenades inside the complex,” said Abdul Raziq Qaderi, the acting police chief of Balkh province.

“Five security personnel and five civilians were killed and 66 others were wounded,” he added.

Noor Mohammad Faiz, a senior doctor at the local public hospital, confirmed the toll, adding that some of the wounded were in critical condition. “Police, prosecutors, court staff, women and children are among those wounded,” Faiz said.

The insurgents were holed up inside the complex for six hours, surrounded by a large number of Afghan security forces before they were taken down.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which underscores Afghanistan’s precarious security situation as US-led foreign troops pull back from the frontlines after a 13-year war against the Taliban.

“Our mujahideen have carried out a martyrdom attack... in Mazar-i-Sharif city,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said by telephone.

Published in Dawn, April 10th, 2015

On a mobile phone? Get the Dawn Mobile App: Apple Store | Google Play

Opinion

Avoid Modi’s nationalist turf
Updated 19 Oct 2021

Avoid Modi’s nationalist turf

It remains the only party with a presence in every Indian state and makes it best equipped to effect the required radical change.
Back to the Fund
Updated 20 Oct 2021

Back to the Fund

The main IMF conditions have failed to deliver sustainable growth or even fiscal or external deficit reduction over four decades.
The lamp of guidance
Updated 19 Oct 2021

The lamp of guidance

Those seeking to learn from his example must follow the moral precepts he gave otherwise it is half-hearted devotion at most.

Editorial

Opposition’s chance?
Updated 19 Oct 2021

Opposition’s chance?

What the opposition can do is take advantage of the cleavage between PTI and the establishment, perhaps widen it and leverage it.
Evading tax laws
Updated 20 Oct 2021

Evading tax laws

Challenge of tax compliance can't be dealt with without directly taxing incomes irrespective of source and punishing tax evaders.
19 Oct 2021

KCR delays

AS political and bureaucratic stakeholders drag their feet over reviving the Karachi Circular Railway, residents of...
Financial troubles
Updated 18 Oct 2021

Financial troubles

Growing trade gap is fuelling the current account deficit and bringing the already meagre foreign exchange reserves under stress.
18 Oct 2021

Complaint portal

IN a ruling on Thursday, the Mingora bench of the Peshawar High Court held that the Prime Minister’s Performance...
18 Oct 2021

Capital’s master plan

IT is encouraging that on Thursday, the restructured commission formed by the federal cabinet to revise ...