63 killed in Kabul blast, IS owns responsibility

KABUL, Aug. 18, 2019 (Xinhua) -- An Afghan man cries over his brother's death in a suicide attack during a funeral ceremony in Kabul, capital of Afghanistan, Aug. 18, 2019. An explosion ripped through a packed wedding hall in Kabul late on Saturday evening, killing 63 people and wounding 182. (Xinhua/Rahmatullah Alizadah/IANS)

Kabul   At least 63 people were killed and over 180 injured in a suicide bombing at a packed wedding hall here, reports said on Sunday. The IS has claimed responsibility for the attack, which has left many relatives of the couple getting married dead.

Citing an IS statement issued in Arabic, Khaama Press reported that the attack, “which targeted a gathering of non-believers”, was carried out by IS suicide bomber Abu Asim Al-Pakistani.

Earlier, the Taliban, in a statement, rejected any involvement in the Saturday night attack, saying that they condemned incidents which target women and children.

A suicide bomber targeted a wedding hall, packed with hundreds of guests, late on Saturday night.

Interior Ministry spokesman Nusrat Rahimi said the blast, that took place around 10.40 p.m. was a suicide bombing, TOLO News reported. He also expressed apprehensions that the number of casualties might increase.

Sources and witnesses said the Shahr-e-Dubai wedding hall, located in police district 6 (PD6), was packed with guests when the explosion occurred.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani condemned the attack.

“I strongly condemn the inhumane attack on the wedding hall in Kabul last night. My top priority for now is to reach out to the families of victims of this barbaric attack. On behalf of the nation I send my heartfelt condolences to the families of those who were martyred,” he said in a tweet.