Almost 22 were injured in an explosion in Kabul


Kabul: At least 22 people were injured in a bomb blast in a busy commercial area of ​​the Afghan capital Kabul on Saturday, according to hospital officials and witnesses.

The incident happened in the western part of the city, where the Shia Muslim minority often gathers.

Video footage published online showed ambulances rushing to the scene, which is close to bus stops.

According to a spokesman for the Taliban’s Interior Ministry, an investigation team was at the scene of the explosion to help the injured and count the casualties.

The attack came just before Ashura, the feast of the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson Hussein and his martyrdom, and no terrorist group immediately claimed responsibility. Ashura is mostly observed by Shia Muslims.

At least eight people were killed and 18 injured in an explosion carried out by the Sunni Muslim organization Islamic State in Kabul on Friday.

Although IS does not control any territory in Afghanistan, it has deadly sleeper cells that have attacked the country’s religious minority as well as Taliban patrols.

After two decades of fighting, the Sunni Muslim Taliban authorities took control of Afghanistan in August last year. They have promised to give Shiite mosques and other buildings additional protection.

Sayed Kazum Hojat, a Shiite religious expert in Kabul, warned that while the Taliban government had increased security ahead of Ashura, it should be more alert for possible attacks.

Despite a lack of recent census data, estimates put Afghanistan’s Shia population at 10 to 20 percent of the country’s 39 million people, including Persian-speaking Tajiks, Pashtuns, and Hazaras.

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