Bomber attacks meeting of Islamic scholars in Afghanistan

Bomber attacks meeting of Islamic scholars in Afghanistan

No group has claimed the attack, but the Taliban issued a statement on Twitter saying its fighters had "nothing to do" with the bombing.

No group has yet claimed responsibility but police suspect Daesh, which has been behind a series of bloody attacks in Kabul since 2016.

A suicide bomber struck at one of the entrances of the compound where the meeting of the religious body, known as the Afghan Ulema Council, was taking place in the traditional tent of the Loya Jirga, or the council of elders.

A motorcycle suicide bombing targeted a gathering of Afghanistan's top clerics on Monday in Kabul, killing at least eight people and injuring nine, the police said.

The council appealed on both the Afghan government forces and the Taliban and other militants to halt the fighting and agree on a cease-fire.

Balegh told the participants that the clerics were not in favor of foreign troops in Afghanistan and that the scholars should work for a grander convocation of religious figures to find a way to end the war.

Militant attacks have killed dozens of people in Kabul in recent months, showing no sign of easing during the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan.

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"A suicide bomber detonated the explosives he was carrying on a road leading to the site of the gathering... and according to initial reports and information seven people have been killed", Kabul police spokesman Hashmat Stanekzai said in a statement.

On May 30, gunmen armed with assault rifles and grenade launchers stormed the heavily fortified headquarters of the interior ministry, battling security forces for more than two hours.

"We the religious scholars call on the Taliban to give a positive response to the Afghan government's peace offer in order to prevent further bloodshed", the religious scholars said.

The Taliban recently issued a warning for civilians to "keep away" from military and intelligence centres in Kabul as they were planning more attacks.

The myriad attacks since 2017 included two of the deadliest in the city since the U.S. invasion: a truck bomb on May 31, 2017 that killed more than 150 people, and an ambulance bomb on January 27 this year which killed more than 100.

He expressed his sympathy with the Afghan government, nation and the bereaved families of the heinous crime and said the establishment of sustainable peace in the war-stricken country depends on unity and vigilance of the government and people from different faiths and ethnic groups. The Islamic State group has also claimed responsibility for several attacks in the capital.

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