23 die in suicide blast


The attack struck at the heart of Afghanistan’s intelligence service and underscored the Taliban’s increasing ability to carry off complex and targeted attacks.
The explosion ripped through a crowd in Laghman province just as officials were leaving the main mosque in Mehterlam, 100 kilometres east of Kabul.
Two top provincial officials from Laghman were among the dead, and the blast destroyed several government vehicles.

A Taliban spokesman said a suicide bomber on foot targeted Abdullah Laghmani, the deputy chief of Afghanistan’s National Directorate for Security (NDS). The spokesman for Laghman’s governor, Sayed Ahmad Safi, confirmed Laghmani was killed.
The National Directorate for Security is headed by an ethnic Tajik, and the killing of Laghmani, a Pashtun, could further exacerbate ethnic tensions as the country counts the results of the August 20 presidential
election.

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