UPDATE – Blast hits Afghan capital Kabul, at least 22 injured

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KABUL (Reuters) -A bomb exploded in a busy shopping street in Afghanistan’s capital Kabul on Saturday and at least 22 people were injured, hospital officials and witnesses said.

The blast occurred in a western district of the city where members of the minority Shi’ite Muslim community regularly meet.

Video footage posted online showed ambulances rushing to the scene, which is also near bus stations.

A spokesman for the Taliban interior ministry said an investigation team was at the blast site to help the wounded and assess casualties.

No militant group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which came ahead of Ashura, a commemoration of the martyrdom of Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, which is marked mainly by Shi’ite Muslims.

On Friday, at least eight people were killed and 18 injured in a blast in Kabul carried out by Islamic State, a Sunni Muslim militant group.

Taliban security stand guard during a protest against US drone strike that killed the Al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri, in Kabul, Afghanistan, 05 August 2022. US President Biden announced on 01 August that the United States killed al-Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri in a drone strike in Afghanistan on 31 July, in a counter-terrorism operation carried out by the CIA. Al-Zawahiri succeeded Osama bin Laden as the leader of al-Qaeda after bin Laden was killed in Pakistan by US special forces under Obama’s administration in 2011. EPA-EFE/STRINGER

(Reporting by Kabul newsroom; editing by Jason Neely)

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