Nearly 22 injured in Kabul in explosion

Kabul: At least 22 people were hurt when a bomb exploded in a busy commercial area in Kabul, the capital of Afghanistan, on Saturday, according to hospital officials and witnesses.

The incident happened in a part of the city’s west where the minority Shi’ite Muslim community frequently congregates.

Ambulances were seen rushing to the location, which is close to bus stops, in video footage that was released online.

An investigating team was at the blast scene, according to a spokesman for the Taliban interior ministry, to assist the injured and count casualties.

The attack, which occurred just before Ashura, a celebration of Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, and his martyrdom, was not immediately claimed by any terrorist group. Ashura is mostly observed by Shi’ite Muslims.

An explosion carried out by the Sunni Muslim militant organisation Islamic State in Kabul on Friday left at least eight people dead and 18 injured.

Despite not having any territory under its control in Afghanistan, IS has lethal sleeper cells that have been attacking the country’s religious minority as well as Taliban patrols.

After a two-decade struggle, Sunni Muslim Taliban authorities took control of Afghanistan in August of last year. They have promised to give Shi’ite mosques and other buildings additional protection.

A Shi’ite religious expert in Kabul named Sayed Kazum Hojat warned that while the Taliban government had increased security in advance of Ashura, it should be more vigilant for any attacks.

Despite the lack of recent census data, estimates place Afghanistan’s Shi’ite population at between 10 and 20 percent of the country’s 39 million people, including Persian-speaking Tajiks, Pashtuns, and Hazaras.

The post Nearly 22 injured in Kabul in explosion appeared first on News24-English.

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