Bomb blast in Kabul kills eight, injures more than 20

Written by Javed Iqbal

A general view of a street in Kabul, Afghanistan, August 5, 2022. REUTERS/Ali Khara

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KABUL, Aug 6 (Reuters) – A bomb blast in a busy shopping street in Afghanistan’s capital Kabul on Saturday killed at least eight people and wounded 22, hospital officials and witnesses said.

The bomb exploded in a western district of the city where members of the Shia Muslim minority meet regularly. Islamic State, a Sunni Muslim militant group, claimed responsibility for the attack, the group said on its Telegram channel.

A senior doctor at a private hospital said at least eight people died and 22 were injured.

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An Interior Ministry spokesman said an investigation team was at the scene of the blast to help the injured and assess the victims.

Video footage posted online showed ambulances rushing to the scene, which is also close to bus stations.

The attack came ahead of Ashura, a commemoration of the martyrdom of Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, which is marked mainly by Shia Muslims.

On Friday, at least eight people were killed and 18 injured in an explosion in Kabul carried out by the Islamic State. Read more

Islamic State does not control any territory in Afghanistan, but it has sleeper cells that have attacked religious minorities in the country as well as patrols from the ruling Taliban.

The Sunni Taliban authorities, which took over Afghanistan last August after a two-decade insurgency, have said they will provide more protection to Shiite mosques and other facilities.

Sayed Kazum Hojat, a Shiite religious scholar in Kabul, said the Taliban government had increased security ahead of Ashura but should improve vigilance.

No up-to-date census data exists, but estimates put the size of the Shiite community at between 10–20% of the population of 39 million, including Persian-speaking Tajiks and Pashtuns as well as Hazaras.

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Reporting from the Kabul newsroom Editing by Andrew Heavens, Mark Heinrich and Frances Kerry

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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Javed Iqbal

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