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3:16 pm - Sunday January 21, 9280

Kabul blast at Afghan Voice, Tabyan centre kills dozens

Kabul,

At least 40 people have been killed and dozens wounded in a blast in Kabul near the offices of a news agency and a cultural centre, the interior ministry has said.

The explosion early on Thursday struck an area close to both the Afghan Voice news agency and Tabyan cultural centre, local media reported, the Al Jazeera News reported.

1TV News, quoting an interior ministry spokesman, said a suicide bomber was likely to have been behind the attack.According to one survivor, activists had gathered at the Tabyan social and cultural activity centre for a meeting when a suicide bomber detonated his explosives, TOLO News reported.

Images posted to social media showed the aftermath of the blast, with the Afghan Voice office pictured ripped apart by the force of the explosion. Other photos showed pictures of dead bodies strewn across the ground in an outside area.Afghan Journalists Safety Committee (AJSC) condemned the attack “in the strongest terms possible”, writing on Twitter.

The group said it was heading to the scene to assist the aid efforts.AJSC recently reported a surge in attacks against journalists, with at least 73 cases recorded in 2017, an increase of 35 percent compared with 2016.In May, ISIL claimed an attack targetting an Afghan state television building in Jalalabad that killed six people.

In November, at least one security guard was killed as ISIL fighters stormed Shamshad TV, a private television station.Earlier, in January 2016, after threats from the Taliban, a minibus carrying TOLOnews employees was bombed, killing seven people during the evening rush hour.

More broadly, the Afghan capital has come under attack several times in 2017.
On March 8, more than 30 people were killed when gunmen dressed in white lab coats stormed a hospital in the centre of the city.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as ISIS) claimed responsibility for that attack, but officials considered other groups could have been responsible.

On May 31, a truck bomb exploded near the diplomatic district, killing more than 150 people. It remains unclear who was behind the assault.On October 21, ISIL claimed responsibility for killing at least 39 people at a Shia mosque in Kabul.

Posted in: World

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