Suicide bomber kills 13, wounds 40 in eastern Afghanistan

Suicide bomb attack leaves at least 13 dead, 40 injured in Afghanistan's east

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Relatives and residents take part in a burial ceremony for one of the victims of a suicide attack in Asadabad, capital of Kunar province, Afghanistan February 27, 2016.

At least 13 people have been killed and over 40 others injured in a suicide bombing in Afghanistan's eastern province of Kunar on Saturday, officials said.

Provincial Governor Wahidullah Kalimzai said the bomber rode up on a motorcycle to the entrance of the government compound in the town of Asadabad and blew himself up.
The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.

A tribal elder and militia commander named Haji Khan Jan, were among the dead.

The incident comes as direct peace talks with the Taliban are due to take place next week.

Jan had led a local uprising against the Taliban in the past, a witness added.

Kunar is a restive and remote province that shares a long border with neighbouring Pakistan - which the Afghan government has accused in the past of harbouring Taliban militants.  

Delegates from Afghanistan, China, the US and Pakistan met in the Kabul last week for a fourth round of talks aimed at forming a path back to the nascent peace process, which was interrupted by last summer’s announcement that Taliban leader Mullah Omar had died.

The fresh peace initiative comes as the insurgents wage an unprecedented winter campaign of violence across Afghanistan, underscoring a worsening security situation more than 14 years after they were driven out of power by US-led NATO forces.

TRTWorld and agencies