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Dozens of casualties in suicide attack on Afghan protesters in Nangarhar

Attack came hours after a double bombing in front of a girls' school in Jalalabad

A suicide bomb attack on protesters in eastern Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province on Tuesday, September 11 killed at least 32 people, officials said, in the latest violence to hit the country.

Another 128 people were wounded in the blast. The provincial governor’s spokesperson Ataullah Khogyani and provincial health director Najibullah Kamawal both confirmed the latest casualty toll.

The attack was in Mohmand Dara district, where demonstrators had blocked the Jalalabad to Torkham highway in protest over the appointment of a local police chief.

Earlier, Khogyani said at least five people were killed and another 30 were wounded in the blast in Nangarhar province. Sohrab Qaderi, a provincial council member, said at least 45 casualties had been taken to hospital but added that the toll could rise, Reuters reported, and according to another provincial council member, Obaidullah Shinwari, at least 40 people were killed.

Double bombing at Jalalabad girls’ school

The attack came hours after a double bombing in front of a girls’ school in the provincial capital Jalalabad killed a boy and wounded four others.

The first explosion happened in front of Malika Omaira girls’ school at around 8:30 a.m. (0400 GMT), Khogyani told AFP. A second bomb went off as students from a neighbouring boys’ school and locals gathered at the scene, he added.

The twin blasts took place an hour after a bomb exploded outside Biba Hawa girls’ school in nearby Behsood district, Jalalabad education department spokesman Asif Shinwari said.

Students had not arrived for class and there were no casualties, he added.

No group has yet claimed responsibility for any of the attacks, but the Taliban and Islamic State Khorasan Province are both active in Nangarhar, which borders Pakistan.

With reporting from AFP. This post was updated a number of times on September 11.

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