An ambulance transports victims from the site of the blasts in Kabul. (Reuters: Mohammad Ismail)
A number of people have been killed in explosions near a funeral in Kabul just days after a powerful truck bomb attack killed more than 80 and wounded hundreds.
The explosions rocked a cemetery where a local senator’s son was about to be buried, Interior Ministry deputy spokesman Najib Danish said.
Mr Danish said at least six people had been killed, while a witness who did not want to be quoted by name told the Reuters news agency that 12 people had died and 18 had been wounded.
Afghanistan’s Tolo News television reported that as many as 18 had been killed.
Mr Danish said government officials, including members of Parliament, had been at the funeral, which was being held for Salim Ezadyar, the son of Senator Alam Ezadyar.
@afgexecutive: Chief Executive Dr Abdullah is safe and sound. He is unharmed in the explosions at the funeral ceremony in Kabul this afternoon”
Alam Ezadyar is deputy speaker for the upper house of the Afghanistan Parliament.
Government Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah was at the funeral, but was unharmed, a statement from his office said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility.
The Taliban, which has often carried out bomb attacks in the past, issued a swift denial that it had any role and instead blamed factional rivalries in the Government’s own camp, the group’s spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said.
The explosions follow Wednesday’s powerful truck bomb attack, which killed more than 80 people and wounded hundreds.
Protest victim demonstrated for better security
Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of downtown Kabul demanding better security in the capital in the wake of the truck attack.
@ARG_AFG: “Pres @ashrafghani condemns the outrageous attack on mourners burying the martyred. The country is under attack. We must be strong and united.”
Several demonstrators were killed and police were injured in the protests, authorities said.
Salim Ezadyar was one of the demonstrators killed during the protest on Friday.
The nature of Friday’s demonstration shifted when protesters — many calling for the country’s leadership to resign — attempted to move closer to the palace and some rushed police, who fired warning shots and used water cannons and eventually tear gas in attempt to disperse the crowd.
The city’s police chief said some demonstrators fired weapons in the direction of his men.
A member of Parliament said on Friday that eight protesters had been shot dead, while a hospital official said four corpses were brought to his facility.
Police said two protesters were killed on Friday and 25 police injured, but would not comment on the number of fatalities when asked to clarify the death toll on Saturday.
The truck attack was one of the deadliest attacks in the 16-year Afghanistan intervention.