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JALALABAD: A suicide bomber in the eastern Af­­ghan province of Nangarhar killed at least four people, including a prominent local militia commander, considered a leading opponent of the militant Islamic State group in the region, officials said on Monday.

The bomber targeted Hayat Khan, a local tribal elder and commander of local militia forces in the Behsood district of Nangar­har, Attaullah Khogyani, the provincial governor’s spokesman said.

“Haji Hayat Khan was a prominent tribal elder and he was playing a important role in the fight against Daesh,” said provincial council member Sohrab Qaderi, using the term often employed for the militant Islamic State group in Afghanistan.

“He was a strong barrier against Daesh expansion in Nangarhar.”

The incident follows a series of attacks on targets in Nangarhar, the province on the border with Pakistan where IS first appeared in Afghanistan in late 2014.

No one claimed responsibility for the attack, but both the Taliban and the militant Islamic State group are active in the province.

In a separate development, the militant IS group claimed responsibility for Saturday’s attack against a midwives training centre in Nangarhar. The attack killed three people and wounded seven.

Published in Dawn, July 31st, 2018