A look at the Islamic State affiliate's rise in Afghanistan

19 Août, 2019, 16:54 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Afghan police men stand guard outside the wedding hall after an explosion in Kabul Afghanistan Sunday Aug.18 2019

The Afghan interior ministry confirmed the death toll hours later.

At approximately 10:40 p.m. local time on Saturday evening, a suicide bomber detonated an explosive in a wedding hall in Kabul, Afghanistan.

President Ashraf Ghani, in comments on the Kabul blast before the Daesh claim, said the Taliban could not "absolve themselves of blame for they provide a platform for terrorists".

In a TV interview, Mirwais Elmi said his bride survived but his brother and other relatives were among the 63 people killed in Saturday's attack.

Afghanistan's president on Monday vowed to "eliminate" all safe havens of the Islamic State group as the country marked a subdued 100th Independence Day after a horrific wedding attack claimed by the local IS affiliate.

"I can't go to the funerals, I feel very weak".

The Afghan affiliate has been based in eastern Nangarhar province, a rugged region along the border with Pakistan, but it also has a strong presence in northern Afghanistan and has of late expanded into neighboring Kunar province, where it could prove even harder to dislodge.

Kabul's huge, brightly lit wedding halls are centers of community life in a city tired of decades of war, with thousands of dollars spent on a single evening.

The Taliban have condemned the attack and denied any involvement.

I strongly condemn the inhumane attack on the wedding hall in Kabul last night.

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"There is no justification for such deliberate and brutal killings and targeting of women and children", Zabiullah Mujaheed said in a text message to the media.

"Devastated by the news of a suicide attack inside a wedding hall in Kabul".

Expectations are rising for a deal in which the United States would start withdrawing its soldiers from Afghanistan after almost two decades of war that has ground into a stalemate.

The blast occurred at the Dubai City wedding hall in western Kabul, in a part of the city that many in the minority Shia Hazara community call home.

There has been no let-up in fighting and bomb attacks in Afghanistan over recent months despite talks between the United States and the Taliban since late a year ago.

But there are concerns among Afghan officials and United States national security aides that Afghanistan could be plunged into a new civil war that could herald a return of Taliban rule and global militants, including Daesh, finding a refuge.

Khalilzad said the peace process had to be accelerated, in particular the intra-Afghan talks. The mountainous province provided shelter for al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden for almost a year following the Taliban's ouster from power in late 2001, and U.S. forces struggled for years to capture and hold high-altitude outposts there.

US President Donald Trump is hoping to withdraw all of America's troops from Afghanistan before the 2020 presidential election.

Heather Barr of Human Rights Watch responded on Twitter that the Taliban denial "highlights the fact that a U.S. -Taliban deal won't end attacks on Afghans". The militants have been refusing to negotiate with the Afghan government until a timetable for the USA withdrawal is agreed upon. His government is openly frustrated at being sidelined from the US talks with the insurgent group, which regards the Afghan government as a USA puppet.

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