Afghan suicide bombing kills 18 people including schoolchildren


At least 18 people have been killed and dozens wounded in a suicide bomb attack outside an education centre in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul, government officials said.

The explosion at the private facility, which offers courses for students in higher education, occurred late in the afternoon, the interior ministry said.

The attacker was trying to enter the facility in a heavily Shiite neighbourhood of western Kabul when he was stopped by security guards, Interior ministry spokesman Tariq Arian said.

The Islamic State group said it was behind the attack in messages posted on its social media channels, but did not provide any evidence.

An Isis affiliate claimed responsibility for a similar suicide attack at an education centre in August 2018, in which 34 students were killed.

The Taliban, engaged in peace talks with the government, rejected any connection to the attack.

Within Afghanistan, Isis has launched large-scale attacks on minority Shiites, whom it views as apostates.

The US signed a peace deal with the Taliban in February, opening up a path towards withdrawing American troops from the conflict.

Earlier on Saturday, a roadside bomb killed nine people in eastern Afghanistan after it struck a minivan full of civilians, a local official said.

Ghazni province police spokesman Ahmad Khan Sirat said a second roadside bomb killed two policemen, after it struck their vehicle that was making its way to the victims of the first explosion.

He added that the bombings had wounded several others, and that the attacks were under investigation.

No-one immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks.

The provincial police spokesman claimed the Taliban had placed the bomb. (Source: BBC/Independent UK)