Iran has strongly condemned the bombing of a Shia mosque in Kandahar, Afghanistan, during Friday prayers.
A bomb blast near the Bibi Fatima Mosque has killed at least 40 people. Pictures released after the incident showed bodies lying on the floor and windows with broken windows as others tried to help.
There was a large crowd at the mosque when the suicide bombers carried out the bombing. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack.
Meanwhile, Iran’s foreign ministry issued a statement condemning the attack, urging Shia and Sunni Muslims to unite.
These are said to be attempts to create differences between Shia and Sunni Muslims in the country after a series of suicide attacks on Shia mosques in Afghanistan.
Iran is a Shia Muslim majority country and speaks openly of any incident of violence against Shia Muslims in the world.
What statement did Iran release?
Iran has issued a statement calling for direct violence against Shia Muslims and has called for an end to it.
The foreign ministry said in a statement: “Again, Islamist enemies broke the strings of terrorists through criminal taqfiri (declaring another person unjust) and shed the blood of victims in Afghanistan during Friday prayers.”
“A large number of pilgrims were martyred and wounded at the Fatima Mosque in Kandahar. The Iraqi Foreign Ministry condemns this terrorist attack by the Taliban. The Foreign Ministry extends its condolences to the families of loved ones and martyrs in Afghanistan.
In addition, the Foreign Ministry has spoken of efforts to create differences between Shia and Sunni Muslims.
“The Foreign Ministry has warned of conspiracies to create divisions among the enemies of Islamic countries,” the statement said. May be denied in the name of terrorism and violence.
Iran has cited a terrorist attack on a Shiite mosque in Kunduz.
One week ago, more than 50 people were killed and many more injured in an attack on a Shia mosque in Kunduz, Afghanistan. IS-Khorasan (IS-K), a branch of the Islamic State in Afghanistan, claimed responsibility for the attack.
In its statement, Iran said, “This heartbreaking incident and the tragic incident of the terrorist attack in Kunduz have previously been emphasized in Shia and Sunni mosques and gatherings in Afghanistan, but security needs to be increased and strengthened.”
“Our Muslim brothers and sisters in Afghanistan, the Islamic Republic of Iran, firmly believe that with unity and concerted efforts they will thwart their enemies’ divisive plans.”
How the attack was carried out
The Islamic State said in a statement that two attackers killed security forces before entering the mosque and detonating themselves.
Ahmadullah told AFP: “After we finished praying, we started firing.”
“After this there were two or three explosions and we fell towards the windows. Many of the martyrs or wounded were lying there.”
During Friday and Friday prayers, the mosques are crowded. An AFP reporter said at least 15 ambulances arrived at the scene.
Reuters news agency reported that Taliban special forces had taken control of the scene and asked people to donate blood to help the victims.
A Taliban Interior Ministry spokesman tweeted on Friday that he regretted the incident. “We are deeply saddened to learn of the bombing of the Shia Brothers’ mosques in Kandahar, in which a number of comrades were martyred and injured,” he wrote.
IS continues to attack
The Islamic State continues to carry out these attacks against Taliban control in the country.
Kandahar is the second largest city in Afghanistan and the birthplace of the Taliban in a sense, so the attack here is considered very important.
A suicide bomber struck a Shia mosque during Friday prayers. At least 50 people have been killed in an attack in the northern city of Kunduz. IS-K claimed responsibility for the attack and described it as the worst attack since US troops left the country in August.
IS-K is the most violent Sunni Muslim extremist group of all jihadi extremist groups in Afghanistan.
It has targeted a number of international organizations, including the Afghan security forces, Afghan politicians and ministries, the Taliban, Shia Muslim and Sikh religious leaders, the United States, NATO forces and humanitarian aid groups.
Shia Muslims continue to be targeted
Sunni Muslim extremists have consistently targeted Shia Muslims in the past, who see them as unjust.
Shia Muslims make up about 10% of Afghanistan’s population. Most of them belong to the Hazara community, the third largest ethnic group in the country. The group has faced discrimination and persecution in Pakistan for years, including in Afghanistan.
Earlier this month, human rights group Amnesty International denied allegations that the Taliban had killed 13,000 people.
The Taliban seized control after US forces withdrew from Afghanistan in late August. The U.S. military has been in Afghanistan for two decades since the Taliban were ousted in 2001.
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