Explosion outside Kabul mosque kills many; shows Taliban not fully in control

At least two people were killed and many others were wounded when an explosion happened outside Kabul’s Eid Gah Mosque, where a memorial prayer was happening for the mother of Taliban’s deputy cultural minister and spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid

Oct 03, 2021
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Explosion in Kabul

At least two people were killed and many others were wounded when an explosion happened outside Kabul’s Eid Gah Mosque, where a memorial prayer was happening for the mother of Taliban’s deputy cultural minister and spokesperson Zabiullah Mujahid.  Many local journalists tweeted the number of dead could go up significantly. And the explosion was followed by shooting. Soon after the attack, the Taliban cordoned off the area.  

Saeed Khosti, the spokesperson of the interior ministry, confirmed the explosion, adding two people died and four were injured, reported Ariana news. Bilal Karimi, another spokesperson, added no Taliban fighter was killed in the incident. 

It is not yet clear which group is behind the blast. However, ISKP (Islamic State Khorasan Province) has been involved in various IED explosions and attacks, targeting Taliban officials mostly in the eastern city of Jalalabad, the center of Nangahar province, and in Kabul.  No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. However, since the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan in mid-August, attacks by Islamic State group militants against them have increased. The rise has raised the possibility of a wider conflict between the two extremist groups.

ISKP, which maintains a strong presence in the eastern province of Nangarhar, is emerging as a potent challenge to the Taliban, and more so after 15 August, the day the Taliban toppled the US-backed Afghan government. 

Since August, the ISKP has killed many Taliban officials and fighters in IED bombings and other attacks in a clear indication that the Taliban is still far from controlling the country in which many other militant groups are in control of their own fiefdoms. Earlier this week, Taliban fighters clashed with alleged ISKP fighters in some areas in Kabul. However, none of these clashes were acknowledged by the Taliban officials. 

 (SAM)