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Suicide bomber kills 19, mostly Sikhs, Hindus, in Afghanistan
- PT BUREAU
Suicide bomber kills 19, mostly Sikhs, Hindus, in Afghanistan



IN A SHOCKING ATTACK, 19 people, many of them Sikhs and Hindus, who were on their way to meet Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani to seek better guarantees of their security, were blown to pieces by a suicide bomber. Ghani himself was a considerable distance away.

A senior Afghanistan government official confirmed 19 deaths, including at least 12 Sikhs and Hindus, besides scores of people wounded in the attack.

Grieving relatives were seen crying outside the hospital where injured were rushed. 
 
Several community websites quoted various news sources to say the number of Sikhs killed was, in fact, 14 and included Parliamentary election candidate Avtar Singh Khalsa.

 Jawad Sukhanyar reports for the New York Times. 
 
This was the worst tragedy for the Sikh and Hindu minority communities in Afghanistan. The trouble-torn Muslim-majority country has very small communities of Sikhs and Hindus and it was not immediately clear if the attack was intended.

Ghani was in Jalalabad, bordering Pakistan, a few hours earlier to open a hospital. Only a day earlier, he had ordered Afghan forces to resume offensive operations against the Taliban.

An 18-day unilateral ceasefire on account of Eid has just ended in Afghanistan.
 

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