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Malay Mail

KABUL, June 18 — At least two people were wounded in an attack on a Sikh temple in the Afghan capital Kabul this morning, officials said.

“There were around 30 people inside the temple. We don’t know how many of them are alive or how many dead. The Taliban are not allowing us to go inside, we don’t know what to do,” the temple official, Gornam Singh, told Reuters.

A Taliban interior spokesman said two were injured after attackers attempted to drive a car laden with explosives into the area. The vehicle detonated before reaching its target, and Taliban authorities were securing the site, he said.

It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast.

Local broadcaster Tolo aired footage showing heavy grey fumes of smoke rising from the area.

Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers say they have secured the country since taking power in August, but international officials and analysts say the risk of a resurgence in militancy remains. Multiple attacks have taken place in recent months, with some claimed by the Islamic State militant group.

Sikhs are a tiny religious minority in largely Muslim Afghanistan, comprising around 300 family members before the fall of the country to the Taliban. Many had left the country in the wake of the takeover, according to community members and media reports.

The Sikh community, like other religious minorities, has been the continual target of violence in Afghanistan. An attack claimed by the Islamic State at another temple in Kabul in 2020 killed 25.

India’s foreign ministry was “deeply concerned” about reports of the attack. “We are closely monitoring the situation and waiting for further details on the unfolding developments,” foreign ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said in a statement.

Today’s explosion follows a blast yesterday in the northern city of Kunduz at a mosque that killed one and injured two, according to authorities. — Reuters

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