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Mortar fire kills 12 in wedding ceremony in northern Afghanistan

4 November 2016 6:35

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At least 12 people have lost their lives and 30 others sustained injuries after a mortar shell landed in a wedding ceremony in Afghanistan’s northern province of Faryab, officials say.

The deadly assault, believed to have been carried out by the Taliban militant group, took place in Kosa Qala village in Khwaja Sabz Posh district on Thursday afternoon, Afghanistan’s Tolo News TV channel reported, citing local security officials.

It added that five children and six women were among the dead.

Javed Dedar, a spokesman for the provincial governor, however, gave another account of the incident, saying the civilians were traveling to the ceremony when either a roadside bomb explosion or a mortar fire targeted them. He added that the bride was among the injured.

The blast took place in a remote village, making it hard to verify the details. The attack also occurred amid heavy clashes between security forces and the Taliban in the area.

Earlier in the day, at least 30 Afghan civilians, including women and children, were killed in an airstrike carried out by the so-called US-led military alliance in the country’s volatile northern province of Kunduz. The aerial assault also injured at least 25 others.

Afghanistan has been gripped by insecurity since the US and its allies invaded the country as part of Washington’s so-called war on terror in 2001. Many parts of the country still remain plagued by militancy despite the presence of foreign troops.

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