An election candidate was among four persons killed in a bomb explosion at his office in Afghanistan’s Helmand province on Wednesday, reported Reuters. Seven people were injured in the attack, which has been claimed by the Taliban. Parliamentary elections in the country are scheduled on Saturday.
The blast took place inside the campaign office of candidate Jaban Qahraman in Lashkar Gah city. A spokesperson for the provincial governor Omar Zwak said that “explosives were placed inside his [Qahraman’s] sofa”, reported Tolo News. Qahraman was running for the southern province of Helmand.
The other three people killed were sitting in Qahraman’s office at the time of the explosion.
Qahraman “was meeting his supporters in his election campaign office” when the bomb exploded, Zwak told AFP. “We have arrested several people in connection with the blast,” he said.
The Taliban has called for a boycott of the elections. “People who are trying to help in holding this process successfully by providing security should be targeted and no stone should be left unturned for the prevention and failure [of the election],” Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid has said earlier.
The latest attack takes the number of election candidates killed to at least 10. Poll-related violence has increased ahead of the elections.
Last week, 12 people were killed and 32 injured in a bomb blast during an election campaign rally in Takhar province. A motorcycle bomb was detonated to target candidate Nazifa Beg’s rally in Rustaq. In a separate incident, an attack at a campaign office killed eight people, including election candidate Saleh Mohammad Achakzai.
On October 2, a suicide bomb explosion at an election campaign rally in Nangarhar killed 13 people and injured 30. The explosion took place in Kama district where a candidate, Nasir Mohmand, had gathered people to explain his electoral plans.