Kabul: At least 40 people, mostly religious scholars, were killed in a powerful explosion here in the Afghan capital Tuesday. The explosion has left over 60 injured, reports said.
The health ministry said the clerics were in a meeting at the Uranus hall in PD 15 district to mark the birthday of Prophet Muhammad. At least 1,000 people had gathered in the hall at the time of explosion, Tolo News quoted eyewitnesses as saying. No one has so far claimed responsibility for the blast, the news agency said.
Soon after the explosion a government spokesman indicated that it was a suicide attack.
Media reports said the Taliban and the Islamic State group have been carrying out regular bomb attacks in Afghanistan.
Sources described the latest explosion as one of the worst in the Afghan capital for months.
The Islamic State group said it was behind two attacks in Kabul in August that killed dozens of people. A number of people were killed across the country as voters exercised their franchise in the nation’s parliamentary elections in October.
The Taliban militants for the first time in this month have attended an international meeting, hosted by Russia, to discuss the matter.
Reports said that the Taliban’s power and reach have surged over the years but the Islamic State in Afghanistan group, known as Islamic State Khorasan, also remains highly active.
Afghanistan has been witnessing civilian deaths and injuries hitting record high.