At least 7 dead after gunmen open fire on Afghan mosque

The Taliban were responsible for 208 civilian casualties last month. (Reuters pic)

KABUL: Gunmen opened fire on worshippers offering evening prayers at a mosque north of the Afghan capital Tuesday, killing at least seven people and wounding 12, a local police chief said.

The gunmen fled the area after the attack in Khelalzai village in the province of Parwan.

Parwan police chief Haroon Mubarez said the gunmen stormed the mosque when worshippers were offering evening prayers.

“Seven people have been killed and 12 wounded. The gunmen have fled the area,” he told AFP.

It was unclear how many gunmen were involved in the attack.

The ministry of interior confirmed the incident but provided a slightly higher death toll, saying eight had been killed.

Elsewhere Tuesday eight Afghan soldiers were killed while repelling a fierce Taliban attack on Kunduz, a strategic city in the country’s north.

The attacks come as violence has spiked in the country since the Taliban signed a deal with Washington in February, under which Washington said it would pull its troops out of the country in return for security guarantees from the militants.

The United Nations has blamed both the Taliban and Afghan security forces for unleashing violence that has seen a rise in civilian casualties.

The Taliban were responsible for 208 civilian casualties last month – 25% more than in April 2019 – the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (Unama) said in a statement.

It said civilian casualties attributed to Afghan security forces in April numbered 172, an increase of 38%.