Taliban militants kill 2 guards in attack on Afghan governor

Two gunmen hiding pistols in their shoes snuck inside a provincial governor's high-security compound in southern Afghanistan Saturday, killing two guards.

Taliban spokesman Qari Yousef Ahmadi claimed responsibility for the attack, saying the group's target was Kandahar province Governor Tooryalai Wesa, reported Agence France-Presse.

"After killing two bodyguards, the attackers seized their rifles and opened fire on other bodyguards, injuring one," Wesa told AFP, confirming that he was not hurt during the gunfire.

According to the Associated Press, the Taliban militants made it through two security checks before their weapons were detected at the last check — in the reception room for Wesa's office — by a guard who noticed something suspicious and stopped them. They then pulled the guns from their shoes, shot the guards and took their weapons. The gun battle lasted 30 minutes and left both militants dead. Another guard was also injured during the attack.

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AFP reported Wesa said the Taliban were resorting to "new ways and tactics to hurt the government and the people" but reiterated that "they will not succeed."

The Taliban regularly target Afghan officials in an attempt to weaken the government, which they claim is collaborating with foreign occupiers, according to the AP. Saturday's attack was the ninth time militants targeted Wesa in the past three years.