At least three people were killed and 19 others were wounded in a back-to-back mortar attack at a gathering of hundreds of people who were marking the 24th death anniversary of Abdul Ali Mazari, leader of the Hezb-e Wahdat party.
The attack took place at around 12pm Kabul time and it was started when Chief Executive of the National Unity Government Abdullah Abdullah was giving speech at the ceremony in Musala-e-Mazar compound in the west of Kabul.
“This is one of the signs of the enemies of Afghanistan,” Abdullah said after he heard the first sound of the explosion and called the people to be calm and the blast happened far from the gathering.
But the mortars landed in a different part and around the gathering.
Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former president Hamid Karzai, former National Security Advisor Haneef Atmar, former Vice president Yunus Qanuni, Acting Foreign Minister, Salahuddin Rabbani, Second Deputy Chief Executive Mohammad Mohaqiq, and other officials were at the ceremony.
No high-ranking official was hurt in the attack. But sources said that Abdul Latif Pedram, a presidential candidate and head of the National Congress Party of Afghanistan sustained injuries in the attack.
TOLOnews reporter Gulabuddin Ghubar who was covering the gathering said that at least 15 were explosions heard at the area.
Sharif Amiry, another TOLOnews reporter, said the victims of the attack were taken to hospital by police vehicles and ambulances.
“The mortars also hit civilians houses and there are also casualties,” he said.
In the meantime, officials from the Ministry of Public Health said that “two people were killed in a house after it was hit by a mortar shell and three others were wounded.”
“From the gathering, one person was killed and 16 others were wounded,” the ministry said.
Atmar in a statement said that eight of his bodyguards were wounded in the attack.
President Ghani in a statement condemned the attack and called it “a criminal act”.
No group including the Taliban has claimed responsibility for the attack.