Deadly explosion rocks Sikh temple in Kabul
Published: 02:42 PM, 18 June 2022
An assault on a temple of Afghanistan's tiny Sikh community has left one worshipper and a Taliban militant dead as well as the unidentified attackers.
The temple in the capital Kabul was hit by a bomb early in the morning when up to 30 people were inside.
It is the last remaining Sikh temple in the capital.
Community leaders recently estimated that just 140 Sikhs remained in predominantly Muslim Afghanistan, down from 100,000 in the 1970s.
India, which is home to most of the world's Sikh population, said it was "deeply concerned" at news of the attack.
A local official at the scene, Gornam Singh, told Reuters news agency that the Taliban were not allowing Sikhs to enter the temple after the attack.
TV footage showed grey plumes of smoke rising from the area.
A Taliban spokesman told Reuters news agency the attackers had attempted to drive a car laden with explosives into the area but they detonated before they reached their target.
The Taliban, which took control of Afghanistan last year, said a clearance operation was still under way although the attack had ended.
The BBC's Secunder Kermani was interviewing relatives of victims outside a hospital when two Taliban militants stopped his crew, trying to delete their footage.
Since the Taliban took power, the country has seen continuing attacks by rival Sunni Muslim militant group Islamic State.
In April, a bomb attack killed 31 people and injured 87 at a Shia Muslim mosque in the city of Mazar-i-Sharif. In December, an assault on a military hospital in Kabul killed more than 20 people and injured 16. - BBC