Afghan blast death toll rises to 15, all children: officials

By: AFP      Published: 05:36 PM, 18 Dec, 2020
Afghan blast death toll rises to 15, all children: officials

The death toll from a bomb blast at a religious gathering on Friday in eastern Afghanistan rose to 15, with all the victims children, officials said.

"Unfortunately, as a result of this incident 15 people, all children, were martyred," said Wahedullah Jumazada, spokesman for the governor of Ghazni province, where the explosion took place.

Ghazni police confirmed the blast, and that all those killed were children.

A motorbike loaded with explosives blew up in east Afghanistan on Friday, killing at least 11 people at a religious ceremony, officials said.

"The explosives detonated at a gathering in Gilan district of Ghazni province," said provincial governor's spokesman Waheedullah Jumazada, adding that at least 11 people were killed and 20 wounded.

He said the wounded included children.

Interior ministry spokesman Tariq Arian confirmed the blast but said 15 people had been killed.

The spokesman said the explosives were loaded on a motorbike parked near a house in a village where the ceremony was being held.

Taliban and government forces have regularly clashed in Ghazni.

Thirty security personnel were killed last month when a suicide car bomber struck an Afghan army base near Ghazni city, the provincial capital.

The latest violence comes as the Taliban and Afghan government engage in peace talks to end the country's grinding war.