At least 11 killed in mosque blast at Afghanistan's Badakhshan

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A member of Taliban stands guard near the site of a suicide attack in Badakhshan | Photo: AFP

Kabul: At least 11 people were killed when an explosion occurred near a mosque in northern Afghanistan at a memorial service for the Taliban's provincial deputy governor, who died in an attack earlier this week, officials said, according to Al Jazeera.

The explosion happened during the memorial service for Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi, the deputy governor of Badakhshan who was killed in a car bombing on Tuesday.

A former Taliban police official was among those killed and more than 30 others were wounded in the explosion near Nabawi Mosque on Thursday, according to Abdul Nafi Takor, the Taliban-appointed spokesman for the interior ministry.

Takor said there were concerns that the number of casualties could rise further.

The attack in Faizabad, the capital of Badakhshan, also killed the deputy governor's driver and wounded 10 other people.

A car bombing on Tuesday claimed the life of Nisar Ahmad Ahmadi, the deputy governor of Badakhshan, and the explosion took place during his memorial service. The deputy governor's chauffeur was also killed in the attack in Faizabad, the capital of Badakhshan, and ten other people were injured.

Safiullah Samim, a former Afghan police chief in Baghlan, was reportedly killed in the explosion on Thursday, according to Moazuddin Ahmadi, the Afghan official in charge of communication and culture, according to Al Jazeera.

Former Afghan President Hamid Karzai condemned the attack and tweeted that the bombing of mosques is an act of "terrorism" and goes "against human and Islamic standards".

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. The ISIL (ISIS) armed group claimed responsibility for the car bombing on Tuesday.

The Taliban administration has been carrying out raids against members of ISIL, which has claimed several major attacks in urban centres, Al Jazeera reported.

The group has targeted Taliban administration officials and claimed the killing of the governor of northern Balkh province in an attack in March.

Several senior Taliban officials attended Ahmadi's funeral, which took place on Wednesday, along with hundreds of residents of Faizabad.

The Afghan military chief, Fasihuddin Fitrat, denounced the attacks in Badakhshan and asked people to cooperate with Afghan security forces and report suspicious activities in their areas, Al Jazeera reported.

In December, a car bombing killed Badakhshan's provincial police chief as he was on his way to work.

The ISIL regional affiliate, known as the Islamic State in Khorasan Province, said at the time that it had carried out that attack. The group said it had parked an explosive-laden car on the road and detonated it when the police chief was close by.


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