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30 killed, over 70 injured in Paktia twin suicide bombing

AT-KABUL: Twin suicide bombings hit a mosque in southeastern Paktia province of the country on Friday as hundreds of people were gathered for Friday prayers, killing over 30 and wounding nearly 70 worshipers, several sources told Afghanistan Times.

Officials fear that the casualties could increase as bombers detonated their explosives among hundreds of worshipers inside the mosque.

“We have around 30 martyred and over 70 injured in the attack which was carried out by suicide bombers” Abdul Wali Sahee, the deputy governor for the province said.

He explained the victims were shifted to various public and private hospitals and the casualties figure could change in coming hours.

Wali Tabasom, the spokesman for Paktia police chief explained two attackers were involved in the attack which happened at 1:30pm in Khwaja Hasan Mosque of Gardiz city, when hundreds of citizens were gathered for offering Friday prayers.

“The bombers in Burqa first opened fire to kill the guards in front of the mosque then entered and detonated their explosives among the worshipers” he explained.

The injured worshipers were evacuated to several public and private hospitals in the city by police and locals and doctors trying to save the lives of those who are seriously injured.

Taliban have rejected their involvement in the attack and said their fighters were not behind this attack.

Such attacks in the past two years were mostly claimed by Daesh group which is mostly active in eastern Afghanistan- in Nangarhar province- with mostly carrying such attacks in capital Kabul.

After several mosques were attacked by the terrorist in the past two years, government deployed security forces to guard those mosques and worshiping places which have been vulnerable against terrorist attacks.

The Daesh group which has been hardly under military pressure from the Afghan and foreign forces in the country mostly striking soft targets such as mosques and civic government departments such as health and educational facilities

Three Daesh fighters this week attacked the Refugee Ministry provincial office in eastern Nangarhar province in which at least 15 people- including two employees of international organizations- were killed and several others were injured.

Daesh group is also active in northern Afghanistan.

On Tuesday the group’s 250 fighters and their leader for northern Afghanistan-Habib Rahman- after surviving a month-long Taliban onslaught surrendered to Afghan security forces.

At least 300 fighters from the both groups were killed and over 500 were injured in the month long battle in which Taliban captured all areas, previously controlled by the rival terrorist groups.

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