Published: Thu, August 22, 2019
Global News | By Blake Casey

Kabul wedding blast: Groom has 'lost hope' after deadly attack

Kabul wedding blast: Groom has 'lost hope' after deadly attack

Trump said he had received information on the latest U.S. -Taliban talks and described the negotiations as "good". Now Washington hopes the Taliban can help rein in IS fighters, even as some worry that Taliban fighters, disenchanted by a peace deal, could join IS. "We will eliminate [IS] hideouts all around the country".

The Taliban said in an Independence Day statement they looked forward to the departure of all foreign forces.

Families of the victims of a suicide blast at a wedding in Kabul, Afghanistan, laid their loved-ones to rest Sunday, August 18. The attack was claimed by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) group.

Despite more than $80 billion in American taxpayer funds devoted to developing the Afghan security forces over almost 18 years, the troops continue to struggle to defeat the Taliban and now ISIS.

The United Nations said earlier this year that more than 32,000 civilians had been killed in Afghanistan over the past 10 years.

The event hall's owner, Hussain Ali, said his staff continues to find body parts as they clean up the aftermath from the attack.

Independence day ceremonies were disrupted in Mehtralam, the capital of the eastern province of Laghman, when militants hit a celebration venue with five rockets, officials said, adding that six civilians were injured.

Ambassador Xijun assured Rabbani that China will continue its assistance in the Afghan reconciliation process. No other country has suffered the collateral damage, mainly in terms of losses of life, of the Afghan war as Pakistan.

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More than 180 people were wounded, with many women and children among the casualties, interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi said on Sunday as grieving families thronged to Kabul's crowded cemeteries.

Taliban were considering that they would stop fighting in areas where the United States would start withdrawal.

Bruce Hoffman, director of the Center for Security Studies at Georgetown University, sees Afghanistan as a possible new base for IS. "In response to this targeted attack I have called an extraordinary security meeting to review and prevent such security lapses", Ashraf Ghani added. Few appear to believe that the Taliban will step in to protect civilians from IS or anyone else after years of killing civilians themselves.

"And we have things under control, very well with a small force".

There are concerns among Afghan officials and US national security aides about the talks with fears Afghanistan could plunge into a new civil war that could see a return of Taliban rule and global militants finding a sanctuary. Meanwhile, the Taliban movement (outlawed in Russia) has denied involvement in the attack. Taliban forces have often fought Islamic State for territory and resources.

The US has about 14,000 troops in Afghanistan and is part of a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation mission there.

The Afghan president did not speak about ongoing negotiations between the United States and Taliban representatives.

"Instead of embracing fantasy, the U.S. should continue to keep a modest number of troops in Afghanistan to ensure the government survives and the country does not again become a terrorist haven", he said and added, "What is required is an endurance strategy, not an exit strategy, based on local conditions, not political calendars".

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