July 30, 2016
An explosion has rocked Afghanistan’s western city of Herat, leaving one civilian dead and five others, including a police force member, wounded.
Herat police said the blast took place close to a compound belonging to the Afghan army on Herat’s Minarets Road on Saturday morning. Officials said the explosives were placed in a hand cart.
The Public Health Directorate in Herat said two of those injured in the explosion were in critical condition.
No individual or group has claimed responsibility for the attack, but it bears the hallmark of those carried out by members of the Taliban militant group.
Herat is among the relatively calm provinces in Afghanistan, but militants are active in the region’s several remote districts.
Afghanistan faces a security challenge years after the United States and its allies invaded the country in 2001 as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror. The offensive removed the Taliban from power, but many areas in the country are still beset with insecurity.
There are currently some 10,000 foreign forces in Afghanistan despite the end of the US-led combat mission on December 31, 2014. The forces, mainly from the US, are there for what Washington calls a support mission. NATO says the forces focus mainly on counter-terrorism operations and training Afghan soldiers and policemen.
On July 23, twin explosions tore through a demonstration by members of Afghanistan’s mainly Shia Hazara minority in the capital, Kabul, killing at least 80 people and wounding more than 230 others. The deadly incident was claimed by the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group.
The United Nations has recorded 1,601 civilian deaths and another 3,565 injuries in the country in the first six months of 2016.
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