Kabul: At least 12 dead in suicide blast near cleric gathering

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The suicide attacker detonated his explosives near a tent where Muslim clerics had gathered to discuss peace efforts.

At least 12 people have been killed in a suicide attack targeting Muslim leaders and scholars who had gathered in a tent near thePolytechnic University in the capital, officials said.

Afghan interior ministry spokesman Najib Danish said dozen others were wounded in Monday’s attack in Kabul and that the death toll is expected to rise.

“The attackers was on foot near the gate of the university,” he said.

Waheed Majrooh, a spokesman for Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health, told Al Jazeera that at least 12 wounded were transfered to emergency units.

The Taliban often claim their fight against the foreign forces and their followers in the country is a holy war. They are seeking to return the country to strict Islamic rule after their 2001 ouster by US-backed troops.

Al Jazeera’s Jennifer Glasse, reporting from Kabul, said the religious scholars across the country had gathered in the tent to issue a ‘fatwa’ – a religious edict issued by an expert in Islamic law – against suicide bombings and the ongoing war in the country.

“The gathering had just finished and the clerics were coming out of the tent when that sucide bomber went off,” she said.

“They had just come to an agreement saying that suicide bombing was unislamic.”

SOURCE: AL JAZEERA NEWS