KABUL (Reuters) – Secretary of State. Mike Pompeo said on Saturday that Washington remained committed to Afghanistan's peace and stability as police searched in the body of moccasins in eastern Farrar where bomb explosives killed at least 69 people.
PHOTO FILE: Secretary of State. Mike Pompeo gives information to the media at NATO headquarters in Brussels, Belgium 18 October 2019. Kenzo Tribouillard / Pool via REUTERS / Photo File
The explosives that went out during Friday prayers were placed inside the mosque in the Jawdara area in the Haska Mena area. On Friday, local officers reported the dead number at 62 and about 50 injured.
“The United States remains committed to Afghanistan's peace and stability, and will continue to fight terrorism,” said Pompeo in a statement. “We stand by the people of Afghanistan who simply want peace and a future to be free from these violent acts of violence.” T
Sohrab Qaderi, a member of the provincial council Nangarhar, said that the mosque, with a capacity of more than 150 worship at the time, many people when the bombs exploded.
“69 people, including children and older people, were brought to their relatives,” said Qaderi, adding that more bodies could lie under rubble.
No group claimed the responsibility but the government blamed Taliban insurgents, who are fighting for strict Islamic law to apply them after forces led by US.
Suhail Shaheen, spokesman for the Taliban, denied that the group was responsible. In a tweet, he said that the witnesses of the attack said that it was a mortar attack by government forces.
One of the wounded, Gulabistan, 45, said the mosque was full when the explosion occurred.
“Mullah has already started prayers and reciting sacred verses of Koran, when a huge surge occurred, then it came dark, the only thing I remember women's voices and then I found myself in hospital,” said Gulabistan.
He said that he was told that his son was among the dead and that his brother and two nephews were injured and that they were in hospital.
Reuters reporter saw 67 new graves for the victims in Jawdara village.
The European Union said it aimed to undermine the hope of peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.
The Taliban fighters and the Islamic State are active in parts of Nangarhar, which divides a border with Pakistan in the east.
The UN report this week said 4,313 civilians were killed and injured in the Afghan war between July and September.
Reporting by Abdul Qadir Sediqi in Kabul and Ahmad Sultan in Nangarhar; additional reporting by Lucia Mutikani in Washington; Organizing Frances Kerry and Rosalba Brien
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