Over 40 Killed in Past Day Amid Sharp Rise in Violence

At least 40 people were killed in 10 provinces of the country and over 50 more were wounded in the last 24 hours.

In one of the incidents, 11 civilians were killed and 29 more were wounded in a roadside bomb explosion that targeted a bus carrying passengers in the southern province of Zabul.

“This bomb hit a 404 bus, in which, unfortunately, 11 civilians were martyred and 29 more were wounded,” said Wais Samimi, the police chief of Zabul.

In Logar, five members of the National Directorate of Security, the head of the economy directorate of the province and a manager of the Central Bank branch in the province were killed in three separate incidents that all involved attacks by unknown gunmen.

Also in Logar, two civilians were killed and six more were wounded after two mortar shells hit their house on Sunday evening. The incident happened following clashes between government forces and the Taliban in Baraki Barak district in Logar.

“There was a clash between the government forces and the Taliban. One mortar hit our house. Two of us were wounded. Another mortar hit outside. Four or five more were wounded there,” said Shah Agha, a resident of Baraki Barak district.

“We have one martyr. We brought our wounded here (to Emergency Hospital in Kabul),” said Nasir, a resident of Baraki Barak district. “We have no option but to leave the area.”

Meanwhile, 16 members of Afghan security forces and four civilians were killed in Ghazni, Herat, Farah, Ghor, Badghis, Faryab, Paktika and Khost. Officials said 10 soldiers and two civilians were wounded in the incidents.

“How long will this war continue and how much will we sacrifice? I repeat, anyone who will win militarily, will govern on the grave,” said Atiqullah, a former military officer.

The Defense Ministry said that 150 Taliban were killed and 37 more were wounded in Afghan forces operations in 12 provinces in the last 24 hours. But the Taliban has denied this claim.

“The Taliban will be killed more to the extent they insist on violence–and will be defeated,” said Fawad Aman, a spokesman for Ministry of Defense.

“We repeat our call to the negotiating sides to return to the talks and expedite their efforts to end violence,” said Shahrzad Akbar, chairperson of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission.