Two separate suicide attacks in Afghanistan killed at least 48 people and injured dozens on Tuesday.
At least 26 people were killed and more than 40 were wounded in an explosion at President Ashraf Ghani’s campaign rally in the city of Charikar in Parwan province, Al Jazaeera reported. The president was not injured in the attack.
Nasrat Rahimi, the spokesperson for the Ministry of Interior, said four soldiers were among those dead. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.
Wahida Shahkar, a spokesperson for the provincial governor, said the blast was caused by an improvised explosive device kept in a security vehicle. A local government official, however, said a suicide bomber carried out the attack.
“Most of the victims seem to be the civilians,” provincial hospital head Abdul Qasim Sangin told Reuters. “Ambulances are still operating, and the number of casualties may rise.”
In a separate incident, another explosion killed at least 22 people in Afghanistan’s capital city Kabul. Thirty-eight people were injured.
Officials at Afghanistan’s Ministry of Interior said the explosion near Massoud Square was carried out by a suicide bomber, reported Tolo News. The Taliban claimed responsibility for this attack as well.
“The Taliban terrorists have sustained major blows by the brave members of the Afghan security and defense forces on the battlefield, and they face shameful setbacks on every front, so they plan brutal and chaos-causing attacks on civilians,” the Ministry of Interior said in a statement.
Terror attacks in the country have increased ahead of presidential elections later this month. Afghanistan has witnessed several terror attacks in the past few months amid peace talks between the US and the Taliban. The terror group wants all American and NATO troops to leave the country and is at its strongest now since the US took control of large parts of the country following the 9/11 attacks.
Last week, United States President Donald Trump said he had called off secret talks with the Taliban after they admitted responsibility for a bombing in Kabul that killed at least 16 people, including an American soldier.
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