Bomber attacks meeting of Islamic scholars in Afghanistan

A series of bombings in Kabul has killed dozens of people in recent months and shown no sign of easing

A series of bombings in Kabul has killed dozens of people in recent months and shown no sign of easing

Today's attack targeting civilians and those religious leaders working towards peace in Afghanistan exposes the terrorists' inhumanity and contradicts the Islamic principles and legitimacy they claim to defend.

"According to our initial information, eight people have been killed including a policeman". It was not immediately clear how many of them were among those killed. Police said that if the bomber had gone deeper into the tent, the casualties would have been significantly higher.

The Kabul police commandment officials are saying that 7 people have been killed and 9 others have been wounded. Two policemen were wounded, he added.

The blast detonated outside the hall, he said.

More than 2,000 religious scholars were attending the event that began Loya Jirga (Grand Council) tent on June 3.

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"We believe direct negotiations will enable both the sides [the Afghan government and the Taliban] to discuss their differences and demands on the negotiating table to try to find appropriate ways to address them", cleric Murad noted while reading Monday's edict.

Meanwhile, the religious scholars repeated their call on the Taliban to accept the Afghan government's "unconditional" peace offer. It was the first time in the 17-year war that the council has issued such an appeal.

The gathered clerics had just issued a fatwa - a religious order - denouncing the ongoing war in Afghanistan.

As per local Tolo News, the fatwa read, "War in its all types is forbidden under the Islamic and Sharia law and it is nothing but shedding the blood of Muslims".

The clerics also urged the Taliban to accept the Afghan government's "unconditional" peace offer.

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The fatwa specifically highlighted suicide bombings, insurgency, corruption, robbery, kidnapping and violence as sins.

Ghafor Aziz, the police chief of Kabul's 5th District, said officers were working to secure the area after the attack.

The Taliban in April announced the start of their annual spring offensive but in recent years, the insurgent group and also the Daesh affiliate in the country carry out near-daily attacks through all the seasons.

Spreading violence by Taliban and other militant groups has forced many schools to close, undermining fragile gains in education for girls in a country where millions have never set foot in a classroom. They are seeking to return the country to strict Islamic rule after their 2001 ouster by US-backed troops.

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