KABUL: A militant attack on a midwife training centre in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday killed at least two people and wounded five, officials said, after the more than six-hour assault was brought to an end by security forces.
At least 67 people, including students and teachers, were inside the centre in Jalalabad, the capital of Nangarhar province, at the time of the attack, provincial governor spokesman Attaullah Khogyani told AFP.
Nangarhar police chief Ghulam Sanyee Stanikzai told AFP two people – a guard and a driver – were killed and five others wounded.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the latest attack, but most of the recent assaults in the city have been carried out by Daesh, which has a stronghold in Nangarhar.
The Taliban denied involvement in a WhatsApp message sent to reporters.
Provincial health department spokesman Inamullah Miakhil said 48 women from remote districts of the province were enrolled in the two-year midwifery course.
The training facility, which is near the centre of Jalalabad in an area where several international organisations and consulates have offices, is funded by the Ministry of Public Health.
“We don’t know why the midwife centre came under attack,” Miakhil told AFP, adding all NGOs and government bodies in Jalalabad were at risk.
A witness in a nearby department told AFP he heard several explosions and then saw three gunmen enter the street where the midwife centre is located.
Some of the security forces earlier appeared to dismantle improvised explosive devices apparently planted in the street by the militants, a witness told AFP.
Jalalabad has been the scene of several attacks in recent months that have killed dozens, as US and Afghan forces continue offensive operations against Daesh and Taliban militants.