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Afghan journalist killed in Kabul bus blast

May 31, 2020

The "Islamic State" group has claimed responsibility for a minibus explosion that left two dead and seven injured in Kabul. The vehicle was carrying employees of a local television station.

A minibus damaged in a blast in Kabul
Image: picture-alliance/AP/R. Gul

A minibus carrying employees of a local television station was hit by a roadside bomb blast in Kabul on Saturday, leaving two people dead and seven injured. The "Islamic State" group has claimed responsibility for the attack.

"Our colleagues Mir Wahed Shah, an economic reporter, and Shafiq Amiri, an employee in the technical department, were martyred in the incident," said Mohammad Rafi Rafiq Sediqi, chief executive of the Khurshid TV station.

Saturday marked Khurshid TV and Radio's eighth anniversary. The attack came soon after a truce that was put in effect for the three-day Muslim holiday of Eid al-Fitr by the Taliban and Afghan national security forces. The truce ended on Tuesday.

"Islamic State," which has claimed some of the deadliest attacks in Afghanistan in recent years, has been engaged in conflict with government forces as well as Taliban militants.

A recent fall in violence has increased hope for Afghanistan's peace process, which seemed to be on the brink after Taliban violence soared in the months following a deal signed with the United States in February.

Read moreIndia-Pakistan tug-of-war jeopardizes Afghan peace process

Press under threat in Afghanistan

Saturday's blast is the latest militant attack targeting journalists in Afghanistan.

In 2016, a Taliban suicide bomber killed seven journalists belonging to Afghanistan's largest private broadcaster, Tolo TV.

Nine journalists were killed while reporting from the scene of a suicide bombing in April 2018, when a second bomber detonated his explosives after waiting for first responders to arrive at the scene.

The US, European Union, NATO as well as the government of Afghanistan condemned the latest attack.

"The Afghan government is seriously investigating this attack. Such attacks are not acceptable for the Afghan government," said Feroz Bashari, a government spokesman, on Twitter.

see/dr (AP, Reuters, AFP)

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