The Latest: US condemns twin suicide attacks in Afghanistan
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — The Latest on developments in Afghanistan (all times local):
The United States is strongly condemning attacks by twin suicide bombers on two mosques in Afghanistan that killed at least 63 people.
A statement by State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said the U.S. condemns the “terrorist attacks in Kabul and Ghor, as well as the other attacks carried out across the country this week.”
“In the face of these senseless and cowardly acts, our commitment to Afghanistan is unwavering,” the statement said. “The United States stands with the government and people of Afghanistan and will continue to support their efforts to achieve peace and security for their country.”
In the attack in Kabul, a suicide bomber walked into the Imam Zaman Mosque, a Shiite mosque in the western Dashte-e-Barchi neighborhood where he detonated his explosives vest, killing 30 and wounding 45, said Maj. Gen. Alimast Momand at the Interior Ministry.
The suicide bombing in Ghor province struck a Sunni mosque, also during Friday prayers and killed 33 people, including a warlord who was apparently the target of the attack, said Mohammad Iqbal Nizami, the spokesman for the provincial chief of police.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for either attack.
The Afghan president has issued a statement condemning the attacks on mosques in Kabul and in western Ghor province that killed at least 63 people during Friday prayers.
Ashraf Ghani says that the day’s attacks show that “the terrorists have once again staged bloody attacks but they will not achieve their evil purposes and sow discord among the Afghans.”
Ghani pledged that Afghan security forces would step up the fight to “eliminate the terrorists who target Afghans of all religions and tribes.”
A suicide bomber attacked a Shiite mosque during late afternoon prayers in western Kabul, killing 30 members of the minority Hazara community while at the same time, a suicide bomber struck a Sunni mosque in western Ghor province, killing 33 people there.
An Afghan police spokesman has raised the death toll from a suicide bombing at a Sunni mosque in western Ghor province to 33 killed, including a warlord who was apparently the target of the attack.
Mohammad Iqbal Nizami, the spokesman for the provincial chief of police, says the bomber struck during Friday prayers, killing 33. Initial reports had 10 dead in that attack.
Nizami says the attack apparently targeted local commander, Abdul Ahed, a former warlord who has sided with the government. Seven of his bodyguards were also killed in the attack.
The attack in Ghor happened as a suicide bomber targeted a Shiite mosque in western Kabul, also during Friday prayers, killing at least 30 people.
No group has so far claimed responsibility for either attack.
An Afghan official at the Interior Ministry says suicide bombing at a Shiite mosque in western Kabul has killed at least 30 people and wounded 45.
Maj. Gen. Alimast Momand says the attacker was on foot and walked into to the Imam Zaman Mosque on Friday in the city’s Dashti Barch area where he detonated his explosives.
The head of the area’s Isteqlal Hospital, Mohammad Sabir Nassib, says it has received the bodies of two people slain in the attack as well as two wounded
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.