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Day After UN Warning, a Deadly Mosque Bombing

Dozens killed in mosque explosion in Afghanistan's Nangarhar province
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Oct 18, 2019 11:27 AM CDT
A wounded man is brought by stretcher into a hospital after an explosion at an Afghanistan mosque on Friday.   (AP Photo/Wali Sabawoon)
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(Newser) – An explosion rocked a mosque in eastern Afghanistan as dozens of people gathered to offer Friday players, causing the roof to collapse and killing at least 60 worshippers, provincial officials said, per the AP and New York Times. Dozens of others were said to be injured. Attaullah Khogyani, spokesman for the governor of the Nangarhar province, said explosives had been placed under a podium in the Deh Bala mosque's main atrium. "Both men and children are among those killed and wounded in the attack," he said. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, but both the Taliban and the Islamic State group are active in eastern Afghanistan, especially in Nangarhar.

The violence comes a day after a United Nations report said Afghan civilians are dying in record numbers in the country's increasingly brutal war, noting that more civilians died in July than in any previous one-month period since the UN began keeping statistics. The report said pro-government forces caused 2,348 civilian casualties, including 1,149 killed and 1,199 wounded, a 26% increase from the same period in 2018. The report said 2,563 civilians were killed and 5,676 were wounded in the first nine months of this year, with insurgents responsible for 62%. In western Herat province, six civilians, including four children, were killed Thursday when their vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb.

(Read more Afghanistan stories.)

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