A bomb blast near a mosque in Afghanistan has killed at least 33 people

A bomb blast near a mosque in Afghanistan has killed at least 33 people. Another 43 people were injured in the incident. Among the casualties are children.

The bomber struck shortly after noon in front of a mosque in the northern city of Kunduz during prayers. The BBC quoted a report quoting Afghan officials as saying.

This is the second attack on the Maulvi Sikandar Sufi Mosque in the northern city in the past few days, the report said. Earlier on Thursday, there were four bombings across Afghanistan. The international militant group Islamic State (IS) has claimed responsibility for all of those attacks.

The Taliban, Afghanistan’s ruling party, has said it has defeated the Islamic State militant group. But the international terrorist group remains a major security challenge for Afghanistan’s new rulers. However, no one has yet claimed responsibility for the attack on worshipers who had gathered for prayers at a mosque in Kunduz on Friday.

“The scene in the mosque (after the attack) was horrific,” a local businessman told AFP.

The BBC says Friday’s attack was similar to Thursday’s attack on a mosque in the town of Mazar-e-Sharif. At least 31 people were killed and eight injured in the attack on Thursday. A separate bomb blast near the northern city of Kunduz has killed at least four people and injured 18 others.
IS claimed responsibility for the attacks, saying it was part of an ongoing global offensive to “avenge” the deaths of its former leader and spokesman. However, the number of bombings in Afghanistan has dropped significantly since the Taliban came to power in August.

The BBC’s Sekandar Kermani in Pakistan says IS does not control any areas or territories in Afghanistan, but since their rival Taliban group took power, the militant group has been attacking areas where it has never had a presence before.

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