Kabul, May 14
An explosion inside a mosque on the outskirts of Afghanistan’s capital Kabul killed at least 12 people during Friday prayers as worshippers gathered for the Eid ul-Fitr holiday during a ceasefire.
Violence rises amid us troop withdrawal
- Violence has increased even as the US has begun an operation to withdraw all its remaining troops in 4 months
- There have been no major reports so far of direct fighting between government forces and the Taliban during the holiday ceasefire, which began on Thursday
The Taliban insurgent group, which declared the three-day truce for the holiday, condemned the attack in a statement, and there was no immediate claim of responsibility. Ferdous Faramarz, spokesman for the Kabul police, said the mosque’s Imam was among the 12 dead and that at least 15 people were wounded in the blast at a mosque in the capital’s Shakar Dara district.
The blast came less than a week after an explosion at a school killed 80 people, most of them schoolgirls from the ethnic Hazara Shi’ite Muslim minority.
The Taliban also denounced that attack and no one claimed responsibility. US officials believe the attack on the school may have been the work of a rival militant group such as Islamic State. Such groups have not signed on to the holiday ceasefire.
Violence has increased even as the US has begun an operation to withdraw all its remaining troops over the next four months. There have been no major reports so far of direct fighting between government forces and the Taliban during the holiday ceasefire, which began on Thursday at the end of the Ramadan fasting month. The government and the Taliban have been holding talks to end their conflict. — Reuters