More Than One Hundred Killed And Wounded As Terror Attacks Rock Afghanistan

From USA-Today:
Twin suicide blasts near the Afghan parliament during Tuesday's afternoon rush killed dozens of people and wounded dozens more as a wave of violence rocked the country.

"Taliban terrorist group carried out two suicide attacks today in KBL targeting a bus carrying civilians, many lost their lives," Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said on Twitter.

Two other attacks elsewhere in the country killed 12 people and wounded several more, including the United Arab Emirates ambassador to Afghanistan.

Zabihullah Mujahid, spokesman for the militant Afghan Taliban movement, said on social media that his group orchestrated the Kabul attack, targeting a busload of security officials. Mohibullah Zeer, an official in the Public Health Ministry, told the Associated Press that at least 38 people were killed and another 72 were wounded.

Victims included soldiers and civilians, Zeer said.

Parliament member Amir Khanyar told Pajhwok Afghan News the first blast, a car suicide bombing, occurred near an office of the parliament formerly used by the National Directorate of Security. The second blast came a few minutes later and targeted a minibus that carried officials of the National Assembly, Khanyar said.

President Ashraf Ghani issued a statement calling the carnage an attack against humanity and promising to hunt down those responsible. The victims included innocent women and children, he said.

In southern Afghanistan, the UAE ambassador Juma Mohammed Abdullah al-Kaabi and "a number" of UAE diplomats were wounded when explosions ripped through the governor's compound in Kandahar province, the UAE foreign ministry said. The diplomats were in Kandahar on a humanitarian mission, the ministry said in its statement.

Kandahar Gov. Homayun Azizi had been meeting with the UAE ambassador when explosives in the room detonated, The Wall Street Journal  reported. Both were in stable condition, the newspaper said. The Journal, citing an Afghan official it did not name, said UAE diplomats were among those killed.

In Helmand province, the Taliban claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing that killed seven people in Lashkar Gah, AP reported.

The Taliban controlled most of Afghanistan before being driven out of power following the terror attacks in the U.S. in September 2001. The group continues to carry out attacks aimed at destabilizing the U.S.-backed, elected government.

The U.S. military has handed off primary responsibility for security in Afghanistan to the Afghan government, although thousands of U.S. forces remain there in mostly advisory and support roles.

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