At least 10 dead and dozens injured after explosion at mosque in Afghanistan

·2-min read
File photo: Women wearing a burqa sell clothes along a roadside in Mazar-i-Sharif on 31 October (AFP via Getty)
File photo: Women wearing a burqa sell clothes along a roadside in Mazar-i-Sharif on 31 October (AFP via Getty)

At least ten people have died and 40 injured after a series of explosions rocked Afghanistan on Thursday.

While no group immediately came forward to take responsibility for the attack, most victims of the three attacks belonged to the minority Shiite Muslims community.

A Shia mosque located in the northern Afghan city of Mazar-e-Sharif was the worst hit, where at least ten worshippers were killed.

Dr Ghawsuddin Anwari, the head of the main hospital in Mazar-e-Sharif said the explosions took place when devotees knelt down to offer prayers to mark the holy month of Ramadan. The dead and wounded were brought to the hospital in ambulances and private cars, he added.

A resident of the city said she was in a nearby market with her sister when they heard the explosion and saw smoke rising from around the mosque.

“The glass of the shops was broken and it was very crowded and everyone started to run,” the woman, who did not wish to be named, said.

Earlier in the day, a roadside bomb exploded in capital Kabul, injuring two children.

The third explosion took place in northern Kunduz province, where the bomb struck a vehicle carrying mechanics contracted by the ruling Taliban. There is, however, no clarity on the number of people injured in this attack.

The series of explosions comes two days after the bombing of educational institutes in a Hazara Shia neighbourhood of the Afghan capital, killing at least six and wounding 17.

The Shiite community is a religious minority in Afghanistan and is frequently targetted by Sunni militia groups, including Islamic State in Khorasan Province (IS-K).

Last May, the IS affiliate targetted the Shiite-dominated Dasht-e-Barchi neighborhood, killing more than 60 children, most of them girls, after two bombs detonated outside their school.

While the ruling Taliban claim to have secured the country since assuming power in country last August, international analysts have consistently raised fears about the resurgence of militancy.

Additional reporting by agencies

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