Two suicide bombers wearing police uniforms have blown themselves up at an Afghan police headquarters, killing at least 12 officers in a deadly border region that has long been a refuge for Islamist extremists from around the world.
In a statement emailed to the media, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the attacks in the eastern Paktika province.
The attackers made it through three security gates before reaching the main building on the police compound, said Nawab Waziry, the provincial council head.
One attacker detonated his explosives inside the police headquarters building, while the other blew himself up near the entrance about 20 minutes later, Mr Waziry said.
“The site was covered with blood,” Mr Waziry said.
General Daud Andarabi, the spokesman for the regional police commander in south-eastern Afghanistan, said the blasts killed at least 12 officers and wounded 16.
Meyawer Khan, chief of the criminal investigation department for Paktika province, confirmed 12 people were killed. The compound was also used as a police training centre.
The attack took place in one of the most violent areas of Afghanistan, where Nato and Afghan forces fight daily against the Haqqani network, a Pakistan-based Taliban faction closely tied to al Qaida.
The area, about 90 miles south of Kabul, borders the Pakistani region of North Waziristan and has been the target of numerous drone strikes against the insurgents.
A Nato service member also was killed on Saturday in a bomb attack in eastern Afghanistan, but the military coalition did not give any further details, so it was unclear if there was any connection to the Paktika bombing.