A suicide attacker in a police uniform killed 25 policemen and wounded eight others on Monday after infiltrating their morning exercises in Afghanistan’s province of Uruzgan, authorities said.
The interior ministry said the bomber entered a police reserve unit in the provincial capital Tirin Kot at 9:30 am and detonated explosives strapped to his body.
The ministry blamed the “barbaric attack” on “the enemies of peace and stability” in Afghanistan — a term often used to refer to Taliban insurgents. An ambulance driver for the provincial public health department, Ahmad Shah, who rushed to the bombing, described the scene as being like a “butcher’s shop”. “There are body parts, blood pools, police hats and boots scattered around the compound in a mixture of blood and the smell of explosives,” he said.
The police unit had been using a former construction company’s walled compound for their exercises.
An interior ministry spokesman had earlier said 19 policemen were killed, and Juma Gul Himat, the provincial police chief, said some of the eight wounded were in a critical condition.
Himat said the attacker was not a policeman but had acquired a uniform and merged into the crowd, and an investigation had been launched.
A Taliban spokesman, Yousuf Ahmadi, claimed responsibility for the blast in a telephone call to AFP.
“We claim responsibility for the suicide attack in Tirin Kot,” he said.