[Updated at 7:29 a.m. ET] At least 58 people are dead after explosions hit the Afghan cities of Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif on Tuesday, the Shiite holy day of Ashura, officials said.
One attack occurred when a suicide bomber detonated a device at a Shiite shrine in Kabul, killing 54 people, Afghan Health Ministry spokesman Kargar Norughli said. Another 150 were injured.
Another four people were killed by another explosion in Mazar-e Sharif, the provincial capital of Afghanistan's northern Balkh province, police official Lal Mohammad Ahmadzai said. Another 21 were injured in that attack.
"The enemies tried to spread fear in this important holiday in the city," Ahmadzai said.
Ashura commemorates the martyrdom of Hussein, grandson of the Prophet Muhammad. Hussein was killed in battle in Karbala, Iraq in 680, one of the events that helped create the schism between Sunnis and Shiites, the two main Muslim religious movements. Shiites are a minority presence in Afghanistan, which is predominantly Sunni.
The attacks came a day after Afghan President Hamid Karzai warned that the Taliban could make a comeback as the country struggles with security a decade after a U.S.-led coalition ousted the hardline militia from power.
"If we lose this fight, we are threatened with a return to a situation like that before September 11, 2001," Karazai told an international aid conference in Bonn, Germany.
Karzai said that though there had been progress over the past 10 years, stability remains a distant goal.
You're welcome, I'm sure.
In my many years of studying Islam,I've often wondered why Sunni Muslims seem to have such an unrelenting rancor against the Shia.Oh I know all the standard reasons given blah,blah.Still...inthe grand scheme of things the question yet remains for both groups:does your god Allah really care?Really?Who asked him,and what did he actually say?The ridiculousness of this age-old issue ought to be apparent to any right-thinking person,and yet...here they are(Muslims)slaughtering each other in places like Iraq,Iran,Afghanistan,et.al.over...what?Can any of your Muslim readers of this blog render a coherent explanation for this phenomenon that would makes us go,"Ah!So that's why they murder each other?Well,that makes sense!"Again,as I stated,I've studied Islam for years,and the willingness of some Muslims to kill and murder at the drop of a hat leaves me baffled and at times utterly furious(I.e.,when I hear about so-called"honor"killings[murders]).So...here's your chance,Mr./Miss Muslim/Muslima.Try to go beyond the standard rote answers and just tell us how you really feel.
This will go on til the end of time! They live to fight!
It looks like the Pakistani ISI is trying to foment fear among sectarian groups. Their political timing is perfect with this Bonn conference going down. You wonder why these people support this craziness? Is it all ego with these guys?
I'm glad we liberated Afghanistan in 2002. Aren't you?
Liberated from whom, do you say? You mean we conquered it with a lot of Afghans needlessly dead, don't you? We had no business there than the Russians did back in the 1980's but this the right-wing media will never say!!!
Let these people continue to kill each other off . Unfortunately they have been doing it for thousands of years and it hasnt stoped yet, has anybody got a sulution ?
I have a solution.
Get our troops out of there, and then let them have at it.
Hey soverign how are you? Good idea! I love simplicity, but our own government will find some way to complicate things once again like every war they have started, but maybe some day they (our gov will learn)
Decent post until you had to throw in the right-wing stuff, George.
Yep, we have been misguided, misinformed by both sides. While I can accept a person's or countries religion and faith, I cannot accept any religion, enforced by their clerics, that approve and even dictate that killing men, women and children, is OK. I wonder what all these " hero, suicide bombers" think when they wind up in hell and get no virgins!
We need to pull our troops out, and let that country destroy itself. We cannot expect a country that is so deep-rooted in thousands of years of violence, to just change. Let them have at it. This country is pitiful, and cannot be changed until they accept that they want to change. Until then, get our troops and tax dollars out of there!
I was wondering if all contact is cut off for the last 11days from Afghanistan because of all the killings since holy holiday? I cant get in touch with my friend who is a retired Marine doing a contracting job over there, im worried its been 11 days. . Anyone know anything?
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