August 21, 2019
Middle East

Suicide bomb attack in Afghan city of Jalalabad kills 16

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Multiple blasts rattled eastern Afghanistans Jalalabad early Wednesday killing at least 16 people, officials said, as militants appeared to target a private company near the citys airport.

“Two attackers detonated their vests, and two more were gunned down by security forces,” provincial spokesman Attaullah Khogyani told AFP, saying that at least 16 people had been killed.

ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack.

“Armed suicide bombers attacked and managed to enter the building of a private construction company early this morning,” said Nangarhar Provincial council member Zabihullah Zmarai.

“A number of civilian workers of the company have been killed,” he added.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

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The bombings come as US and Taliban negotiations continue to hold ongoing peace talks in Qatar aimed at ending the nearly 18-year conflict.

Despite a two-day break before the weekend, negotiations continue on “a daily basis right now and progress is being made”, US State Department spokesman Robert Palladino told journalists Tuesday.

“These discussions are ongoing and what were focusing on are the four interconnected issues that are going to compose any future agreement,” Palladino said — listing them as terrorism, troop withdrawal, intra-Afghan dialogue and ceasefire.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said during an exchange with high school students in Iowa he hoped sufficient gains would be made for him to be able to take a trip to help advance the negotiations “in a couple weeks”.

The continuation of the talks follows a major attack on a joint US-Afghan base in southwestern Afghanistans Helmand province last week, with at least 23 security forces killed in the hours-long assault on one of the largest military installations in the country.

Heavy snowfall across large swathes of Afghanistan has led to a sharp reduction in violence this winter, but warmer weather in the countrys south will likely spark an increase in bloodshed wiRead More – Source

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