Kabul, Aug 18 (efe-epa).- At least 10 people including women and children were injured Tuesday as Kabul was struck by multiple rocket attacks while Afghanistan marked its 101st independence day, official sources said.
The attacks occurred around 9.30 am when at least 14 rounds of rockets were fired from north of the city and landed in areas housing civilian residences, diplomatic missions, government buildings, markets and shops, according to a statement issued by the Interior Ministry.
“Most of these rockets landed on residential houses, as a result of which 10 people including four children and one woman were injured,” the ministry said, adding that two suspects had been arrested in connection with the incident.
No group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far and the ministry statement also did not attribute it to any terrorist or insurgent organization.
However, the Islamic State terrorist group, or Daesh, has been known to carry out similar attacks in the past.
The attacks occurred despite tight security in place due to the independence day celebrations and a partial lockdown due to the Covid-19 crisis.
In other parts of the country, the day was marked by several small scale military parades in different provinces and commemorative gatherings in government buildings, mostly in the absence of the public due to safety and security concerns.
However, the common people have also been commemorating the day with small gatherings all over the country and driving through the cities and holding dance parties, despite the risk of infection posed by the novel coronavirus.
The country has so far registered a total of 37,596 confirmed cases of Covid-19 with 1,375 deaths, according to data offered by the United States-based John Hopkins University on Tuesday.
Last year, when the country celebrated its 100th anniversary of independence from the British, the Afghan government had postponed many commemorative events following a bomb attack in Kabul by the IS that left 63 dead and 182 injured in the run up to the celebrations.
The day had also witnessed a series of explosions in Jalalabad, capital of the eastern province of Nangarhar – the bastion of IS – with the detonation of six bombs that injured 17 people.
Over a century ago Afghanistan, a traditional intersection of civilizations, was witness to a political confrontation, known as “The Great Game”, between Tsarist Russia and the British Empire that sought to gain control over Central Asia.
The British Protectorate continued until 1919, when Afghanistan gained independence at the end of the Third Anglo-Afghan War. EFE-EPA