Gunmen have launched an attack on a ceremony in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul, which was being attended by prominent political leaders on Friday, officials said.
According to the Health Ministry spokesman Wahidullah Mayar, the death toll has risen to 27, and the total of wounded to 30.
All the injured had been taken to hospitals in Kabul, he said, adding that the number of casualties is expected to rise.
Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahim said: “An attack on a ceremony in Kabul that was attended by prominent politicians, headed by Abdullah Abdullah, left 27 dead and 29 others wounded.”
The statwment noted that Abdullah Abdullah and several other politicians escaped the attack unharmed.
According to local media, security forces cleared two of the three buildings from which the attack was carried out.
“The attack started loudly, and it appears that a rocket landed in the area, Abdullah and some other politicians left unharmed,” Abdullah’s spokesman said.
The Taliban have denied they were behind the attack, and while no one has claimed responsibility for carrying it out, Afghanistan’s upstart Daesh (ISIS) affiliate has declared war on the country’s minority Shia population. Most of the people attending the memorial service were reportedly Shia Muslims.
The attack came just days after the United States and the Taliban signed an ambitious peace deal that lays out a conditions-based path to the withdrawal of US forces from Afghanistan.