Wed, 13 Nov 2019

Almost 30 people were killed in a double blast inside a mosque in eastern Afghanistan during Friday Prayers on October 18, a senior provincial official said.

Sohrab Qaderi, a member of the provincial council, said at least 29 people had been killed and more than 100 others wounded in the attack in the early afternoon in the Haska Mena district of Nangarhar Province.

'The number of casualties may rise as the rescue team and people are working to bring out the bodies from the rubble,' Qaderi said.

Zahir Adil, spokesman for the public health department in Nangarhar Province, said 23 of the wounded were transferred to Jalalabad, the provincial capital, and the rest were being treated in the district clinic.

'There are children among both the killed and wounded in the attack,' Adil said.

Haska Mena district

It was not immediately clear what caused the explosion. Some reports said a mortar shell had hit the roof of the mosque. Afghan news agency Tolo quoted local officials as saying that there had been two explosions.

Another official said some of the victims were caught under the rubble caused by the blasts.

'The mosque roof has fallen due to the explosion,' Attaullah Khogyani, the spokesman for Nangarhar's provincial governor, told RFE/RL.

Zarghon Shah, a doctor in the local hospital told RFE/RL that 32 were killed and 60 wounded in the attack.

No militant group has immediately claimed responsibility but both the Taliban and the Islamic State extremist group are active in eastern Afghanistan, especially in Nangarhar.

In the western province of Herat, six civilians, including four children, were killed when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb, a spokesman for the provincial governor said on October 18.

Jelani Farhad added that five other civilians were wounded in the October 17 attack in the Zawal district.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, and tolonews.com

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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