60 SHIITES KILLED IN AFGHAN’S SECTERIAN VIOLENCE
Two bomb blasts apparently targeting Shiaa Muslim shrines as hundreds of people gathered to mark the day of Ashura have killed at least 60 people and injured scores more, according to Afghan police and media reports on Tuesday 12/06/2011.
At least 56 people were killed by a suicide bomber who detonated explosives at the gate of the Abu-Ul Fazil shrine in the capital Kabul on Tuesday, many of them children, the AFP news agency reported. The ministry off health said that more than 100 people had also been injured (see also -Shiites 12.05.11).
In a separate attack, a bicycle bomb near a mosque in the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif killed four worshippers, a district police chief said.
The blasts occurred as Shias gathered to carry out religious rituals to mark one of the most significant days in their calendar. Ashura, a public holiday in Afghanistan, is the Shia day of mourning commemorating the martyrdom of Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammed (see -ABYSS IN ISLAM).
Shias were banned from marking Ashura in public under the Taliban. This year, there are more Ashura monuments around the city than in recent years, including black shrines and flags.
Meanwhile, a bomb placed in a motorcycle exploded in the southern Afghan city of Kandahar on Tuesday afternoon, injuring three civilians, a spokesmfan for the provincial governor said. The site of the Kandahar blast was not near any mosque or shrine.
* Few days earlier, on Tuesday 11/29/2011, Karachi police in neighboring Pakistan have arrested 5 Jundallah operatives who were planning attacks on the Shiaa community in Karachi. Police also seized huge cache of arms and hit lists.
The terrorists have been identified as Syed Kamran alias Waqar, Salar Muhammad alias Khalid, Amjad Khan alias Kargil, Farhan Khan alias Hussain, and Muhammad Munir alias Azeem.
* A man, who gave his name as Ali Sher-e-Khuda, told the BBC on Saturday 12/10/2011, that the Kabul shrine was part of a campaign to target Shiaa Muslims in Afghanistan. He added his group is inspired by Pakistan’s Sunni militant Lashkar-e-Jhangvi organization. Ali Sher-e-Khuda said the group had not officially sanctioned the Kabul attack, but did not deny his men carried it out.
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