Taliban provincial governor killed in suicide attack

Published : 06 Jun 2023 08:18 PM

The acting governor of an Afghan province was killed by a suicide bomber Tuesday, officials said, months after the region's police chief was killed in a similar attack claimed by the Islamic State group.

Security has improved dramatically since the Taliban stormed back to power in August 2021, ousting the US-backed government and ending their two-decade insurgency, but IS remains a threat.

The bomber drove a car filled with explosives into the vehicle carrying Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi -- the deputy governor of northern Badakhshan before stepping up as acting governor last month -- in the provincial capital Faizabad. "The target of this attack was the vehicle carrying Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi," said Muazuddin Ahmadi, the head of culture and information in the province. 

The driver was also killed and six others wounded in the attack, which has so far not been claimed by anyone.

The head of the province's police force was killed in a suicide blast claimed by IS in December last year.

A bomb attack also killed the head of the mining department in April last year. The Taliban and IS share an austere Sunni Islamist ideology but the latter group is fighting to establish a global caliphate instead of the Taliban's more inward-looking aim of ruling an independent Afghanistan.

IS has killed and wounded hundreds of people in attacks since the Taliban government returned to power, some targeting foreigners, in a bid to undermine the Taliban government.