AT-KABUL: At least four Afghan National Army officers and soldiers were killed and 14 others were injured when a Taliban suicide bomber targeted their transportation bus in northern Balkh province of the country, official sources told Afghanistan Times.
The bus was carrying army personnel from Mazar-i-Sharif city to the headquarters of the Shahin Military Corps, which is located in Dehdadi district of the same province.
A suicide bomber detonated his explosive full suicide belt against the bus near to the Corps headquarters in which 4 army personnel were “martyred” and 14 others were injured, provincial spokesman, Munir Ahmad Farhad, told Afghanistan Times.
The injured persons from the attack were shifted by security forces to the army hospitals soon after the attack and the area was cordoned off as investigators arrived in the site of the blast.
A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, took responsibility for the attack in the relatively peaceful province, where Taliban are not more active.
Mujahid said their bomber, identified as Mahmood Bader, native of the central Maidan Wardak province, targeted the bus which was carrying around 32 officers on daily basis to their offices.
The militants claimed 30 of the aboard persons were killed and injured in the attack.
The attack came in a while that Afghan security forces have launched massive clearance operations against Taliban strong hold in neighboring Baghlan province, where Taliban have strong presence for years.
A security official in Balkh, who wished anonymity, told Afghanistan Times that Taliban carried out the attack to reduce military pressure on their fighters in neighboring Baghlan province.