Published: Thu, September 13, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Double bombing outside girls' school in eastern Afghanistan

Double bombing outside girls' school in eastern Afghanistan

This comes nearly a month after Jalalabad City, the provincial capital of Nangarhar, faced a string of deadly attacks that left dozens of civilians dead.

The bombing happened when a group from the district of Achin came to Momandara district to block the main highway between the capital Jalalabad and the Torkham border with Pakistan.

The Nangarhar health department confirmed the toll.

Witnesses told AFP the casualties were students from the boys' school.

A 12-year-old boy was killed and several children and adults were wounded by a secondary blast that hit first responders and families rushing to the scene of the explosion.

"I feel profound indignation at this latest wave of attacks deliberately targeting civilians", said Tadamichi Yamamoto, the senior United Nations official in Afghanistan in a statement. In January, a Taliban-claimed suicide bombing in the capital Kabul killed at least 103.

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Both the Taliban and the extremist group Islamic State are active in the area.

Most or all of the dead and wounded are believed to be civilians.

The escalating violence has dampened hopes of peace talks to end Afghanistan's 17-year conflict but two Taliban officials on Tuesday told Reuters the movement was preparing for another meeting with USA officials following one in July.

The Taliban have long insisted on direct talks with Washington and refused to negotiate with the Afghan government, which they see as illegitimate.

The attack was one of the worst in Afghanistan for months but security officials have warned that similar attacks are likely if crowds gather for campaign rallies ahead of parliamentary elections in October.

In the past two days Taliban fighters killed almost 60 members of the security forces in a spate of attacks in the country's north and threatened a provincial capital for the second time in as many months.

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