At least nine people have been killed and five others injured after a bus they were traveling in was struck by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan’s southern Kandahar province. According to the spokesperson for the provincial governor, all the passengers aboard the bus were civilians traveling from one district to another.
At least two people have been killed and two others wounded after a bomb exploded in a mosque in Kabul, Afghanistan. The bomb was planted inside Wazir Akbar Khan Mosque. The country’s Interior Ministry spokesperson, Tariq Arian, said that the bomb targeted worshipers who had gathered for the evening prayers at 7.25 PM local time.
An attack on a minibus that carried the employees of a local TV station in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul, left a journalist and another employee dead. The authorities said the victims, who were employees of Khurshid TV, were traveling in the minibus when an improvised explosive device attached to the vehicle exploded.
The Islamic State claimed responsibility for an explosive attack that hit a minibus Saturday, in which a troupe of 15 people of the Afghan broadcaster, Khurshid TV, were traveling in Kabul. Two people were killed— a journalist, Mir Wahed Shah and the technician Shafiq Amiri.
“The situation is very bad,” Farhad, an Afghan refugee, describes the atmosphere at the refugee reception center in Sankt Augustin, western Germany. Since news spread about the infections of 165 people residing in this center, anxiety has become the master of the atmosphere in the center, he says.
Dozens of people were killed in three separate attacks in Afghanistan. The Taliban has carried out a series of retaliatory attacks after President Ashraf Ghani’s recent order for resumption of offensive attacks on militant groups in the country. Ghani’s order came the very day that dozens of Afghan citizens were killed in separate attacks.
At least nine people have been killed and 40 others injured after an attack at an army base in Ghazni, in Afghanistan. The spokesperson for the provincial governor, Arif Noori, said that eight of the wounded were in critical condition. He added that they had been transferred to Kabul for specialized treatment.
At least five people have been killed and dozens injured in an attack in Afghanistan’s eastern Paktia province Thursday. It is alleged that an army base was the target for the attack, but the truck filled with explosives blew up before it reached its target. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was a retaliation to the government’s statement that blamed the group for the attacks on Tuesday.
The Afghan Ministry of Public Health says it has registered 414 positive cases of the coronavirus in the past 24 hours. This is the highest number of coronaviruses in Afghanistan since the outbreak. With these new cases, the number of people infected with the coronavirus in the country has exceeded 6,000.
At least 16, people including two newborn babies, were killed after gunmen attacked a hospital in Kabul on Tuesday. Shortly afterward, 24 people were killed and 68 others injured during a burial ceremony in Nangarhar Province. The interior ministry said that among the dead were mothers, nurses and infants, and around 100 people were rescued from the building.
Forty people, including mothers, nurses, and two newborns, were killed in an attack on a government hospital in Kabul. Fifteen other civilians were injured in the attack, according to the Afghan Interior Ministry, while about 100 people at the hospital were rescued. According to officials, Afghan security forces also killed three assailants involved in the operation after a clash that lasted for several hours.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani announced that the Afghan army would now conduct more offensive operations against the Taliban. A series of attacks Tuesday on Afghan security forces and civilians in Nangarhar and the Afghan capital, Kabul, killed at least 39 people and injured dozens.
Restrictions imposed due to the coronavirus on the Afghan cities of Nangarhar, Mazar-e-Sharif, Sar-e-Pul, Jalalabad, Mehtarlam, and Kunduz have been eased. Officials in these cities say that, at the request of the people and the business community, the business centers have been quarantined by providing health care.
On Sunday, Afghan officials accused Iran of torturing and drowning 38 migrants who were attempting to enter the country. The Foreign Ministry says they are investigating. “So far, five bodies have been transferred to the hospital, of these bodies, it’s clear that four died due to drowning,” Dr. Aref Jalali, head of Herat District Hospital, said.
Deputy United Nations Special Representative in Afghanistan, Toby Lanzer, traveled to Lashkar Gah with the help of the World Food Program, World Health Organization, International Organization for Migration and the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.
At least 25 worshipers were killed and eight others were wounded when a lone ISIS gunman rampaged through a Sikh house of worship Wednesday in the Afghan capital, Kabul. The Afghan Interior Ministry reported that one of the dead was a child. The gunman is said to have held many worshipers hostage for several hours while Afghanistan Special forces, helped by international troops, tried to clear the building.
United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in Qatar to meet with Taliban leaders, for the first time since the signing of the historic ceasefire agreement with the fundamentalist group and perpetrator of terrorist attacks. Pompeo will “meet with Taliban officials, including Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, co-founder of the Taliban movement and its main negotiator, to ask them to continue to respect the agreement signed last month.”
Zalmay Khalilzad, the special envoy to the US State Department for Afghan Peace, said it was time for the Afghan government and the Taliban to begin releasing each other’s prisoners. Mr. Khalilzad wrote on his Twitter page Wednesday that the United States wants to release the prisoners as soon as possible, in accordance with their agreement with the Taliban.
The Afghan government has postponed the release of 1,500 Taliban prisoners, which could sabotage the peace agreement between the United States and the Taliban in Doha last month. According to Javed Faisal, spokesman for the Afghan National Security Office, a review of the list of prisoners is delaying the release of Taliban fighters.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has announced the release of 1,500 Taliban prisoners. The prisoners will be released to pursue peacekeeping with the Taliban. As per the order issued by the President, the process of releasing 1500 prisoners will be started on Saturday. The US has welcomed the initiative, while the Taliban have not yet responded.
The United States has begun to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan. According to a statement by US Forces Afghanistan spokesman Col. Sonny Leggett, over the next 135 days, the number of US troops will be reduced to 8,600. At the same time, according to the statement, US forces will continue to participate in anti-terrorist operations against al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, as well as provide support to the Afghan security forces.
Only one day after the Taliban-U.S. Agreement was signed, there was controversy over the measures involved. Afghan President Ashraf Ghani told reporters Sunday that it is not obliged to release the 5,000 Taliban prisoners mentioned in the agreement before internal negotiations in Afghanistan begin.
The United States and the Taliban signed a historic peace agreement in Doha, Qatar Saturday, which opens the door to the total military withdrawal of Americans from Afghanistan after 18 years of war. As per the signed agreement, the U.S. would withdraw forces down to 8,600, from 13,000, with remaining troops withdrawing in 14 months.
Iran became the country with the second-highest number of deaths caused by the new coronavirus Sunday. Iran currently has eight recorded deaths, the most outside China. The situation has led some of its neighboring countries to close their borders, or ban travel to Iran altogether, in fear of the spread of the deadly disease.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced Friday that the Trump administration and the Taliban will sign a peace deal on February 29. “This is an important step on a long road to peace,” Pompeo tweeted, “and I call on all Afghans to seize this opportunity.” The two sides announced almost simultaneously that they would sign the agreement after more than a year of negotiations in Qatar.
According to the Pakistani foreign minister, Afghan Taliban insurgents are ready to reduce violence in Afghanistan. Shah Mehmood Qureshi called the Taliban’s acceptance of curtailment of violent operations a positive step toward peace in the region. The issue has not yet been formally endorsed by the Taliban, and the Pakistani foreign minister has not released further details.
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