Conflicts & War

At least 33 injured in suicide attack in southern Afghanistan

Kabul, Dec 7 (efe-epa).- At least 33 people, including 22 civilians, were injured Monday when a Taliban suicide bomber detonated an explosive-laden vehicle near government buildings in the southern province of Kandahar, officials said.

The attack using a truck occurred at around 10.30 am near the Police Headquarters and district governor’s office in Daman, Kandahar governor’s spokesperson Bahir Ahmadi told EFE.

“In this powerful blast, 33 people – mostly civilians – have been injured,” he said, adding that there were no fatalities, apart from the suicide bomber.

According the Ahmadi, the injured persons included 11 members of the security forces, 15 residents of the locality, and seven administrative employees of the district governor’s office.

“All injured persons are already shifted to hospitals and except one person the rest of injured persons are in stable condition,” the spokesperson said.

The police headquarters and district governor’s office were partially damaged in the powerful explosion.

The spokesperson also blamed the Taliban for the attack, although the insurgents are yet to claim or deny their involvement.

Kandahar province has been witness to heavy fighting in its northern and western districts which share borders with southwestern Helmand and Uruzgan provinces over the past two months.

During these attacks hundreds of Taliban fighters have been killed and injured.

The attack comes amid peace talks between the Taliban and the government that seeks to bring an end to nearly two decades of conflict in the country.

The peace talks, which kicked off on Sep. 12 in the Qatari capital of Doha, had faced a major hurdle as the two sides were unable to reach a consensus on the basic framework for discussions.

Last week, the Afghan government and Taliban negotiators announced having reached a deal to move forward with bilateral peace talks, a major breakthrough after months of negotiations in Doha.

The agreement allows the negotiators to work on the agenda and rules for talks, including the preamble of the negotiations, and take critical issues up for discussions.

The intra-Afghan negotiations were brokered by the United States after signing a peace agreement with the Taliban in February this year.

Washington had agreed for a full withdrawal of troops within 14 months in return for security guarantees that the Taliban would not use the Afghan soil for attacks against foreign countries, particularly the US. EFE-EPA


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