Suicide bomber kills over 30 Afghan civilians during a protest

Nangarhar province has been one of the main strongholds of Daesh fighters since early 2015. (AFP)
Updated 12 September 2018
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Suicide bomber kills over 30 Afghan civilians during a protest

  • Suicide bomber targets civilians attending rally
  • No one has claimed responsibility for the attack

KABUL: At least 32 Afghan civilians were killed and scores wounded on Tuesday when they were holding a rally against a local commander in the eastern province of Nangarhar, officials said.

The main insurgency group, the Taliban who are fighting to drive out the U.S.-led troops and topple the government, immediately distance itself from the attack which came hours after three small blasts took place in the provincial capital, Jalalabad.

Those explosions caused few casualties and apparently happened near schools in the city which has been a key target of bloody attacks for affiliates of Daesh in recent months.

Public health ministry’s spokesman Waheed Majroh in a message said that 128 people were wounded in the suicide attack.

“I feel profound indignation at this wave of attacks deliberately targeting civilians. Our deepest sympathy is with the victims…” the United Nations Special Envoy for Afghanistan, Tadamichi Yamamoto said in a statement.

President Ghani also slammed the attacks, adding they can not deter Afghans from having a “bright future”.

Tuesday’s blasts come following three separate attacks by Daesh network in Kabul since last week, that have resulted in the loss of lives of some 30 civilians and have become cause of serious alarm for Afghans about the expansion and escalation of attacks by the group.

The rise of strikes by the group coincides with a series of gains by the Taliban in the northern areas where they have killed scores of government forces since Sunday.

The escalation of violence, compounded by deepening rift within the government leaders, has seriously impacted the reputation of the administration and raised further doubt about the prospect of next month’s parliamentary polls as well as the presidential one set for April.


Cybersecurity firm: More Iran hacks as US sanctions loomed

Updated 28 min 38 sec ago
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Cybersecurity firm: More Iran hacks as US sanctions loomed

  • Officials with FireEye said on Tuesday the hackers appear to belong to a group it refers to as APT33

DUBAI: A cybersecurity firm is warning that Iranian government-aligned hackers have stepped up their efforts in the wake of President Donald Trump pulling America from the nuclear deal.
Officials with FireEye said on Tuesday the hackers appear to belong to a group it refers to as APT33, an acronym for “advanced persistent threat.” APT33 used phishing email attacks with fake job opportunities to hack computers.
FireEye says the “cyberespionage” effort from July 2 through July 29 targeted primarily Mideast energy firms, as well as some organization in North America and Japan.
Iran’s mission to the United Nations didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
FireEye similarly issued a warning about APT33 a year ago. It says “the current geopolitical climate” may lead to more hacking attempts by the group.