Officials: suicide bomber kills 36 in Afghanistan

Associated Press
Afghans carry the body of a suicide attack victim at the hospital in Maymana, Faryab province, north west of Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Oct. 26, 2012.  A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a mosque in northern Afghanistan on Friday, killing dozens of people and wounding scores, government and hospital officials said. (AP Photo/Qawtbuddin Khan)

View gallery

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a mosque in northern Afghanistan on Friday, killing 36 people and wounding 23, officials said.

The attack in the town of Maymana, capital of northern Faryab province, came as people were gathering at the mosque to celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday.

Top provincial officials, including the governor and the police chief, were inside the building when the bomber set off his explosives outside, where a large crowd had gathered, officials said. The officials were not hurt, but most of the dead were police officers and soldiers.

"The targets of the bomber were all the officials inside the mosque," Deputy Governor Abdul Satar Barez said. He said the dead included 14 civilians.

"There was blood and dead bodies everywhere," said Khaled, a doctor who was in the mosque at the time of the blast. "It was a massacre," said Khaled, who like many Afghans uses only one name.

Video from the scene showed the motionless bodies of several soldiers and policemen lying next to their vehicles parked on a tree-lined avenue of the city, located about 500 kilometers (300 miles) northwest of Kabul. On the sidewalk, a number of civilians lay along the mosque's outer wall, some writhing and moaning in pain.

It appeared to be the deadliest suicide attack in recent months.

On Sept. 4, 25 civilians were killed and more than 35 wounded in Nanghar province, and on Sept. 1, 12 people were killed and 47 wounded in a suicide attack in Wardak province.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai strongly condemned the attack, saying that those who carried it out were "enemies of Islam and humanity."

He said in a statement that 36 people died in the blast and 23 were injured.

The attack came as Karzai was urging Taliban insurgents "to stop killing other Afghans."

In his Eid al-Adha message to the nation on Friday morning, Karzai called on the insurgents to "stop the destruction of our mosques, hospitals and schools."

The United Nations says that Taliban attacks account for the vast majority of civilian casualties in the 11-year war. The insurgents routinely deny that they are responsible for attacks on civilians, saying they target only foreign troops or members of the Afghan security forces.

On Wednesday, Taliban leader Mullah Mohammad Omar urged his fighters to "pay full attention to the prevention of civilian casualties," saying the enemy was trying to blame them on the insurgents.

Also Friday, the Taliban claimed responsibility for killing two American service members in southern Uruzgan province, in what may have been the latest insider attack against Western troops.

In an emailed statement, Taliban spokesman Yusuf Ahmadi said a member of the Afghan security forces shot the two men the day before, then escaped to join the insurgents.

A spate of insider attacks has undermined trust between international troops and Afghan army and police, further weakened public support for the 11-year war in NATO countries and increased calls for earlier withdrawals.

Maj. Lori Hodge, spokeswoman for U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said on Thursday that authorities were trying to determine whether the latest attacker was a member of the Afghan security forces or an insurgent who donned a government uniform.

It was the second suspected insider attack in two days. On Wednesday, two British troops and an Afghan policeman were gunned down in Helmand province.

Before Thursday's assault, 53 foreigners attached to the U.S.-led coalition had been killed in attacks by Afghan soldiers or police this year.


Associated Press writer Slobodan Lekic in Kabul contributed to this report.

Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.

    Recommended for You

    • Woman writes bad Yelp review because of a bodega cat, and the internet destroys her

      Don't mess with the bodega cats. Walk into any corner store a.k.a bodega in New York City, and you'll find a variety of household goods, beer, probably a deli and almost definitely a resident cat. The cats keep the rats and mice away and in return, they get to hang out inside and take naps on the chip shelf. @georgeferrer A photo posted by Bodega Cats (@bodegacatsofinstagram) on Oct 11, 2016 at 4:54am PDT Usually New Yorkers tend to ignore that bodega cats may be a health code violation, because most people would prefer to see cats hanging around than rats. But recently, one Yelper decided to break the golden bodega cat rule, and gave S.K. Deli Market in the East Village a 1 star review after noticing her bodega had a cat chilling on a stack of Budweisers. Big mistake. Reviewer Diana D, who has since deleted her post, claimed she had ordered from the bodega before, but decided to pick up her food instead of getting it delivered. That's when she noticed the adorable cat protecting its store. You gotta be a miserable gentrifying ass bitch to yelp about the bodega cat — سنكامي (@SynKami) October 24, 2016 "Besides being allergic, I wonder what the health code say(s) about this?" Diana asked in her review.  Twitter user SynKami took a screen grab of the review and shared it to his followers, harshly calling out Diana  for complaining about the bodega cat. Twitter promptly erupted, and the tweet has racked up more than 7,800 retweets at the time of writing. @SynKami @asherahresearch does she realize the cat is there to keep the rats away. Dumbazz — jaja (@JaJasTweets) October 24, 2016 @SynKami tbh, I don't trust a bodega that doesn't have a cat — Carlos LaBestia (@Arturo_Ulises) October 25, 2016 S.K. Deli Market's Yelp page was flooded with positive reviews on Wednesday, supporting both the deli and cat, who's name is Ciao Bella, according to one Yelper.   According to a piece published in the New York Times about the controversy over bodega cats, fines could cost the bodega $300 to $2,000. However, a fine for rodent feces found in a store can also land a bodega with a $300 fine. "It’s hard for bodega owners because they’re not supposed to have a cat, but they’re also not supposed to have rats,” José Fernández, the president of the Bodega Association of the United States, told the New York Times.

    • Democrats ask judge to sanction Republicans over Trump

      The Democratic National Committee on Wednesday asked a U.S. judge to hold the Republican National Committee in contempt of court over allegations that Donald Trump encouraged his supporters to intimidate minority voters. The DNC accused Republicans in a court filing of violating a longstanding consent decree, which restricts Republicans' ability to question voters at the polls and prevent those people from casting a ballot. During the presidential campaign, Republican nominee Trump has asked followers to "watch" for fraud in the Nov.8 presidential election in certain areas where minority voters reside, even though no evidence of fraud exists, the filing said.

    • Mom Pictured Holding Syringe While Allegedly Overdosing With Infant Son in Car: Cops

      In the picture, the woman's head is tilted back and her hand loosely grips a syringe.

      Inside Edition
    • Popular Mechanics
    • Nine of the Fastest American Cars to Ever Lap the Nurburgring (10 photos)

      The Nurburgring might be Europe's most famous circuit, but American automakers have headed there for years to develop their latest and greatest performance cars. All manufacturer verified with video, here are nine of the fastest U.S. cars to lap the 'Ring. From Road & Track

      Road & Track
    • 'Dozens' of Women Come Forward After Wisconsin Student's Rape Arrest: Cops

      Alec Cook is accused of raping a woman, who said she begged him to stop as she was assaulted for two hours.

      Inside Edition
    • Clinton ally on emails: 'They wanted to get away with it'

      The email from Neera Tanden, who currently helps run Clinton's transition team, is dated March 2, 2015, the day The New York Times revealed that Clinton had used a homebrew email server while serving as secretary of state rather than her secured government account. While the FBI concluded earlier this year that federal charges against Clinton were not justified in the case, the issue has dogged her campaign to become America's first woman president. Tanden, the president of the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, was trading messages with John Podesta, who was at the time preparing to chair Clinton's campaign.

    • Russia Unveils The New 'Satan 2' Missile That Can Supposedly Wipe Texas Off The Map

      Russia has been in the news lately largely thanks to its attempts to relaunch the Cold War on the internet and its unquestioning support of the Assad regime in Syria. The Satan 2, officially known as the RS-28 Sarmat, has been an open secret for a while now as Russia has more or less engaged in the geopolitical equivalent of a marketing campaign. The Sarmat has been rumored to have missed several key points on its development timeline, and modern Russia is notorious for making claims about its military capability that are not backed up by fact.

    • Family Heartbroken After 4-Year-Old Is Killed by New Dog Dropped Off Minutes Earlier

      The owner reportedly dropped the dog off less than an hour before the attack.

      Inside Edition
    • National Geographic 'Afghan girl' arrested in Pakistan

      An Afghan woman immortalised on a celebrated National Geographic magazine cover as a green-eyed 12-year-old girl was arrested Wednesday for living in Pakistan on fraudulent identity papers. The haunting image of Sharbat Gula, taken in a Pakistan refugee camp by photographer Steve McCurry in the 1980s, became the most famous cover image in the magazine's history. Pakistan's Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) arrested Gul for fraud following a two-year investigation on her and her husband, who has absconded.

    • Pollster Frank Luntz: The Trump campaign ‘is an absolute joke’

      Perhaps best known as the wordsmith behind many Republican talking points, Luntz had quite a few zingers about Trump, including one about the GOP nominee’s sometimes stilted delivery of prepared speeches. “Stevie Wonder reads a teleprompter better than Donald Trump,” he jested.

      Yahoo News
    • Gene study clears 'Patient Zero' as cause of U.S. HIV epidemic

      By Julie Steenhuysen CHICAGO (Reuters) - Genes taken from archived blood samples show the U.S. AIDS epidemic started in New York in the early 1970s, definitively debunking the long-held belief that the virus was spread in the early 1980s by a flight attendant who became vilified as "Patient Zero" for seeding the U.S. outbreak. Scientists have long suspected that HIV had been circulating in the United States for a decade before the first few AIDS cases were identified in Los Angeles 1981. "What we've done here is tried to get at the origins of the first cases of AIDS that were ever noticed," said Michael Worobey, the evolutionary biologist at the University of Arizona who led the study.

    • Mercedes Pickup Truck Concept: Here it Is

      Your first look at what a Mercedes-branded luxury pickup truck could look like.

      Road & Track
    • Jihadists 'shave beards' as pressure builds on Mosul

      Jihadists with the Islamic State group were shaving their beards and changing hideouts in Mosul, residents said, as a major Iraqi offensive moved ever closer to the city. With pressure building on the 10th day of the Mosul assault, Western defence chiefs were already looking ahead to the next target -- IS's other major stronghold of Raqa in Syria. Recent advances on the eastern front have brought elite Iraqi forces to within five kilometres (three miles) of Mosul, and residents reached by AFP said the jihadists seemed to be preparing for an assault on the city itself.

    • Inside Edition
    • Photos of the day - October 26, 2016 (26 photos)

      A boy wades through a flooded cemetery as the country prepares for the traditional honoring of the departed every Nov. 1 known as All Saints Day, at Masantol township, Pampanga province north of Manila, Philippines; people sit on a wall draped by a Venezuelan flag during a protest against President Nicolas Maduro in Caracas, Venezuela; and a migrant looks up to the sky as he stands next to his tent burnt in the makeshift migrant camp known as “jungle” near Calais, northern France. (AP) These are just a few of the photos of the day for October 26, 2016. See more news-related photo galleries and follow us on Yahoo News Photo Tumblr .

      Yahoo News Photo Staff
    • Russia beefs up Baltic Fleet amid NATO tensions: reports

      By Andrew Osborn and Simon Johnson MOSCOW/STOCKHOLM (Reuters) - Russia is sharply upgrading the firepower of its Baltic Fleet by adding warships armed with long-range cruise missiles to counter NATO's build-up in the region, Russian media reported on Wednesday. There was no official confirmation from Moscow, but the reports will raise tensions in the Baltic, already heightened since Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea, and cause particular alarm in Poland and Lithuania which border Russia's base there. The reported deployment comes as NATO is planning its biggest military build-up on Russia's borders since the Cold War to deter possible Russian aggression.

    • Vatican tells Catholics not to scatter ashes of the dead

      The Vatican on Tuesday urged Catholics not to scatter the ashes of the dead after cremation and instead to store them in places approved by the Church. The new guidelines published by the Church also say that the ashes of the dead should not be kept at home but should instead be kept at a cemetery or other sacred place. Doing so reduces "the risk of shielding the dead from prayers for them and the memory of their family and the Christian community", German cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Muller, the prefect of the doctrinal watchdog, told journalists.

    • Tesla Motors surprises with 3rd-quarter profit

      Electric car maker Tesla Motors posted its first quarterly profit in three years on Wednesday, giving investors reason to cheer after months of doubt. Tesla's shares have fallen since the summer as some ...

      Associated Press
    • Kuznetsova edges Pliskova in thriller to reach semis

      Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova produced another extraordinary comeback to win her second straight match at the WTA Finals on Wednesday, sealing a place in the semi-finals. Just two days after she saved a match point to defeat the defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska, Kuznetsova again rallied back from the brink to beat US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova 3-6 6-2 7-6 (8-6) in a heart-stopper at Singapore’s Indoor Stadium. Kuznetsova still has another round-robin match to play on Friday against Garbine Muguruza but is already assured of finishing top of the White Group standings after Muguruza was beaten 7-6 (7-1) 6-3 by Radwanska in Wednesday’s late match.