The Islamic State group has asserted responsibility for a devastating explosion that occurred in a Shiite Muslim neighborhood in the capital of Afghanistan on Thursday evening, resulting in the tragic loss of at least four lives. As reported by Khalid Zadran, a spokesperson for the Kabul police chief, seven other individuals are currently in critical condition. In a late-night announcement on Friday, the Islamic State’s affiliates launched their news agency, Aamaq, officially claiming responsibility for this unfortunate incident.
Videos captured in the aftermath of the explosion paint a grim picture, showing a building with its windows shattered and a fire raging within. Debris and shards of broken glass are strewn across the street below, underscoring the destructive impact of the attack that has shaken the Shiite Muslim community and the nation at large.
The Dashti Barchi locality in Kabul has been a frequent target of the ISIS affiliate in Afghanistan, which has launched significant attacks on schools, hospitals, and mosques. Additionally, the group has targeted other Shiite communities in Afghanistan in recent years.
The extent of the destruction became more evident on Friday morning, with visible craters in the ground and extensive damage to the interior. Among the wreckage, workers cautiously navigated through boxing gloves and gym equipment on the floor, which was stained with blood.
The blast occurred at a sports club located in a commercial center and caused extensive damage. It blew out all sides of the space, shattered windows, and inflicted damage throughout the entire building. According to an instructor at the club, the explosion took place after a typically crowded boxing session that usually accommodated around thirty participants.
Since the Taliban assumed control in August 2021, the Dashti Barchi district in Kabul has borne the brunt of repeated attacks from an affiliate of ISIS. These attacks have included significant acts of violence against schools, hospitals, and places of worship, such as mosques. Additionally, in recent years, the group has targeted other Shiite communities in various parts of Afghanistan.