Afghan Forces Deliver the Final Assault at the Indian Consulate

It was not immediately clear whether the consulate was directly targeted. A local politician also stays in the area.

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Afghan security forces respond to a car bomb attack by Taliban militants near a foreign guesthouse in Kabul. (Photo: AP)

A group of armed men attacked the Indian consulate in Mazar-e-Sharif, the capital of northern Balkh province, the provincial governor spokesperson told media.

The visuals, which are delayed by two hours, show fierce engagement between security forces and the militants.

Officials said attackers have taken up positions inside a residential home located in front of the Indian mission and are firing on the consulate.

“The number of attackers were 4, two of them killed but not confirmed by police yet,” Afghan news agency Pajhwok Afghan News said in a tweet.

At 10:04 am Indian Standard Time, this update came in.

The Indian ambassador to Afghanistan Amar Sinha had tweeted that heavy fighting is underway but everyone in the consulate is safe.

Sinha wrote, the Governor of Balkh province, Atta Mohammad Noor was monitoring the developments personally.

Sources told Xinhua news agency that there were no casualties on the Indian side.

The report said it was not immediately clear whether the consulate was directly targeted, as the area also has a building belonging to a local politician.

Indian diplomatic missions in Afghanistan have come under militant attacks earlier too. In 2008 and 2009, the embassy in Kabul was attacked, leaving dozens dead.

In May 2014, gunmen attacked the Indian consulate in Herat, while in August 2013, nine civilians died when the consulate in Jalalabad was targeted.

Read the previous updates on The Quint.

(With inputs from IANS.)

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