Rocket attack targets Afghan political leaders at Kabul event

Rocket attack targets Afghan political leaders at Kabul event

Rocket attack targets Afghan political leaders at Kabul event

But moments after the announcement, another explosion and gunfire could be heard that sent people running in panic.

"How these attackers managed to get into this Shiite neighbourhood, pass through all the security cordons, and then attack such an important gathering is indicative of a major security and intelligence failure on the part of the Afghan government", security analyst Atiqullah Amarkhail told AFP.

The gathering was being held to mark the 24th death anniversary of minority community Hazara leader Abdul Ali Mazari, leader of the Hezb-e Wahdat party.

Some high level political leaders including former President Hamid Karzai, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, presidential candidate Mohammad Haneef Atmar, and Haji Mohammad Mohaqiq were present in the gathering when the incident took place.

No high-ranking official was hurt in the attack.

The news channel's reporter said he heard at least 15 explosions during the attack that began when Afghanistan's Chief Executive Officer Abdullah Abdullah was addressing the gathering.

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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. "So far, we have reports that three people were injured", said Nasrat Rahimi, a spokesman at the interior ministry.

"Abdul Latif Pedram has been injured in Kabul attack, but is in stable condition", said the statement.

Atmar in a statement said that eight of his bodyguards were wounded in the attack.

President Ashraf Ghani condemned the attack and called it "a criminal act".

The attack claimed by the Islamic State group represents a major security breach and marks a resumption of violence in the capital after weeks of calm amid ongoing peace talks between the U.S. and Taliban in Doha.

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