Taliban: Bomb blast kills 2 people in Shiite area of Kabul

ISLAMA BAD — A bomb attack in a minority Shia neighborhood of the Afghan capital on Saturday left two people dead and 22 injured, a Taliban official said.

According to Khalid Zadran, the Taliban-appointed spokesman for the chief of police of Kabul, the explosion took place in the Puli-e Sokhta area of ​​western Kabul. One of the injured was in critical condition, he added.

Responsibility for the bombing was not immediately claimed, but the Islamic State group is likely to blame, which has targeted large-scale attacks on the Shiites of the Afghan minority in the past.

ISIS’ regional affiliate known as Islamic State in Khorasan province has ramped up attacks on mosques and minorities across the country since the Taliban took power last August.

ISIS, which emerged in eastern Afghanistan in 2014, is seen as the biggest security challenge for the country’s new Taliban rulers. After their takeover a year ago, the Taliban have launched a sweeping repression against IS.

On Friday, a bomb hidden in a cart near a mosque in another Shia area of ​​Kabul exploded, killing at least eight people and injuring 18. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for that attack.

Five people, including two Taliban fighters, were killed in a shootout between the Taliban and IS gunmen on Wednesday near the Sakhi shrine in the Karti Sakhi district of the Afghan capital. The attack took place during preparations for Ashoura, which commemorates the 7th-century death in battle of Imam Hussein, the grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.

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