Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Sunday, September 27th, 2020

Prison Attack Ends but Jalalabad City Remains Under Total Lockdown

Prison Attack Ends but Jalalabad City  Remains Under Total Lockdown

JALALABAD - Afghan security forces have brought the Jalalabad prison situation under control, but the streets of the city remain empty after a total lockdown was imposed.
Residents were told earlier Monday to stay indoors and all shops were closed.
The Afghan Army’s Chief of Staff Gen. Yasin Zia also arrived in the city late morning to lead the operation.
By Monday mid-afternoon the prison situation was under control and five attackers had been killed, officials confirmed.
However, clearing operations were still underway in a shopping mall opposite the prison which another group of attackers had occupied.
The gunbattle lasted 20 hours and started on Sunday evening when Daesh militants detonated a car bomb outside the gates of the city’s prison.
An estimated 1,700 prisoners were being held in the facility at the time of the attack – many of the Daesh fighters.
During the attack, hundreds of prisoners escaped but droves were rounded up by security forces who were forced to divert manpower to go after the escapees.
Some prisoners who had been arrested told Ariana News that six attackers entered the prison and ordered them to leave. The prisoners were told that if they did not leave they would be killed by the assailants.
A security source said that the prisoners who escaped include Taliban members, Daesh militants, and criminals.
The attack started just after 6.30 pm on Sunday night and continued through the night and into Monday.
Nangarhar governor’s spokesman, Attaullah Khogyani, meanwhile said the death toll had risen by mid-afternoon to 30 and 50 wounded.
He said the victims include prisoners, security forces and civilians.
Zahir Adil, a spokesman for the provincial health directorate, told Ariana News that 13 of those wounded were in a critical condition.
This attack started just a day after Afghanistan’s intelligence services announced the Afghan special forces had killed a high-ranking Daesh member in an operation in eastern Afghanistan.
A statement late Saturday by the National Directorate of Security said the slain militant was Assadullah Orakzai, an intelligence leader for the IS affiliate (Daesh) in Afghanistan. The statement said he was killed near Jalalabad, the capital of Nangarhar province. IS has its headquarters in the province.
Orakzai was suspected of being involved in several deadly attacks against both military and civilian targets in Afghanistan. (ATN)