Four gunmen storm Indian consulate in Afghanistan

It is not clear who is responsible for the attack but is the latest in a long line of attacks on Indian targets in Afghanistan.
By Ananth Baliga  |  May 23, 2014 at 9:30 AM
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KABUL, Afghanistan, May 23 (UPI) -- Four armed gunmen stormed the Indian consulate in the Herat province of Afghanistan Friday, after which Indian and Afghan security personnel killed them.

The gunmen were armed with machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades as they attacked the consulate early Friday morning. Officials said that no diplomatic staff were injured in the attack, while one of the gunmen was killed by India's Indo-Tibetan Border Police and the other three were killed by Afghan forces.

"One terrorist was killed by ITBP personnel while three have been killed by Afghan forces. The attack has been successfully repulsed," said Indo-Tibetan Border Police chief Subhas Goswami.

Goswami added that security at other diplomatic missions in Kabul, Jalalabad, Mazar-e-Sharif and Kandahar had been beefed up .

The attackers were reported to have entered houses around the consulate before firing at the compound. One of the attackers was shot at while trying to climb the wall surrounding the consulate, and the ITBP held off the attackers until they were joined by Afghan forces.

The attack comes on the eve of Indian Prime Minister-designate Narendra Modi's swearing-in ceremony, which will be attended by Afghan President Hamid Karzai. Modi said he condemned the attack, and that he was "closely monitoring the situation." He also thanked Karzai for the "efforts of Afghan forces in thwarting (the) attack on India's consulate in Herat".

"I condemn the attack on our consulate in Herat, Afghanistan. Closely monitoring the situation. I have spoken to the Ambassador as well," Modi posted on Twitter.

Karzai assured Modi that his government would do all it could to ensure the safety of Indian missions in the country.

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