Three suicide bombers, who were reportedly Pakistani nationals, targeted the Indian consulate in Afghanistan’s Jalalabad on Saturday, killing at least 12 people and injuring 24. No Indian official was harmed in the strike.
The Afghan Taliban denied involvement in the attack. Citing intelligence inputs and preliminary investigation reports, sources in New Delhi indicated that the bombers were Pakistani nationals and had stayed in adjacent Kunar province for seven days before driving to the consulate on Saturday.
They were stopped at a checkpoint near their target, after which they began spraying bullets down a bustling street and detonated explosives in their car.
“This attack has once again highlighted that the main threat to Afghanistan’s security and stability stems from terrorism and the terror machine that continues to operate from beyond its borders,” said Syed Akbaruddin, spokesperson of the external affairs ministry.
The attack comes a week after a security audit in Afghanistan by a team of Indian officials found all of Delhi’s missions in that country to be under increased threat, especially from Pakistani outfits such as the Haqqani Network, which work with Afghan groups.
An Afghan policeman carries a child at the site of a suicide attack in front of the Indian consulate in Jalalabad. (AFP Photo)