KABUL, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber struck an education center in a Shiite area of the Afghan capital on Friday, killing 19 people and wounding 27, a Taliban-appointed spokesman for the Kabul police chief said.
The explosion inside the center in the Dashti Barchi neighborhood of Kabul — populated mostly by members of Afghanistan’s minority Shiite community — took place in the morning hours, said the spokesman, Khalid Zadran.
The victims included high school graduates, both girls and boys, who were taking a practice university entrance exam when the blast went off, Zadran said. He said he would ask for additional security for centers such as the one targeted Friday.
The suicide bombing was the latest in a steady stream of violence since the Taliban seized power. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack
The Islamic State group — the chief rival of the Taliban since their takeover of Afghanistan in August 2021 — has in the past targeted the Hazara community, including in Dashti Barchi.
“Our teams have dispatched at the site of the blast to find out more details,” Abdul Nafi Takor, a Taliban-appointed spokesman for the Interior Ministry, said earlier.
Afghanistan’s Hazaras, who are mostly Shiite Muslims, have been the target of a brutal campaign of violence for the past several years, blamed on the regional affiliate of the Islamic State group. Militants have carried out several deadly attacks in Dashti Barchi, including a horrific 2020 attack on a maternity hospital.
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