A few hours after the official election campaign kick-off in Afghanistan, attackers stormed the office of vice-presidential candidate Amrullah Saleh in the capital Kabul. The attack on Sunday afternoon saw at least nine people killed and around two dozen others injured, according to the Afghan Ministry of Health. At first, no one committed to the act.
At around 4:40 pm local time (2:10 pm CEST) there had been an explosion near the office of Saleh’s Green Trend Party (AGT) and several attackers had entered the office, Interior Ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said , Earlier, President Ashraf Ghani had already tweeted that Saleh had survived the attack.
The attack lasted about six hours. Security forces surrounded the area around the officein Kabul and tried to “kill the attackers as quickly as possible,” Rahimi said. Saleh was not unhurt in the attack. According to the Interior Ministry, all attackers were finally downed.
An eyewitness told AFP that it was a “direct attack on the AGT’s office”: “I heard three explosions on which a dense cloud of smoke could be seen and then heavy gunfire,” the witness Malikzada said.
The former Minister of the Interior Saleh was formerly head of the Afghan secret service. In the presidential election scheduled for September 28, he will serve as vice-candidate for incumbent President Ashraf Ghani.