River ferry sinks in Afghanistan, killing at least 20

At least 20 people have been killed after a boat sank while crossing a river in eastern Afghanistan, a Taliban official says.

Quraishi Badlon, provincial director of the information and culture department in Nangarhar province, said that the boat sank while crossing a river in Mohmand Dara district, killing 20 people including women and children.

Badlon said that the boat was carrying 25 people, according to village residents, of whom five survived.

So far five bodies have been retrieved including a man, a woman, two boys and a girl, the Nangarhar health department said in a statement.

It added that a medical team and ambulances were sent to the area.

The officials did not provide details on the cause of the accident and said that rescuers are still searching for other bodies.

Residents of the area frequently use locally made boats to travel between villages and local markets.