ISIS claims attack on Sikh temple in Afghan capital

The group Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) claimed accountability for an assault on a Sikh temple in Afghanistan’s capital of Kabul that killed at the least one worshipper and wounded seven others.

ISIS made the declare in a press release posted on its Amaq web site late Saturday. It stated the assault on “the Sikh and Hindu temple” was in response to alleged insults made towards the Prophet Muhammad, the central determine of the Islamic faith, by an Indian authorities official. It didn’t identify the official.

Gunmen attacked the Sikh home of worship, often known as a gurdwara, Saturday morning and a firefight between the attackers and Taliban fighters looking for to guard the constructing ensued, Afghan officers stated.

A automobile full of explosives was detonated outdoors of the temple however that resulted in no casualties. Earlier than that, the gunmen threw a hand grenade which induced a fireplace close to the temple’s gate, the officers stated

ISIS stated Abu Mohammed al-Tajiki, a member of the group, stormed the temple after killing the guard after which focused the individuals inside with machine-gun fireplace and hand grenades. IS fighters outdoors the temple detonated 4 explosive units and a automotive bomb concentrating on patrols of Taliban militia who tried to guard the temple. The battle ended after three hours, the Amaq report stated.

Taliban fighters guard the positioning of the lethal assault in Kabul. A number of explosions and gunfire ripped by the temple in Afghanistan’s capital. (Ebrahim Noroozi/The Related Press)

The Sikh Coalition, the most important Sikh civil rights group based mostly in the USA, stated the gurdwara was considerably broken by the assault.

“The recurring tragic violence concentrating on the Afghan Sikh neighborhood is devastating, but in addition completely predictable and preventable,” stated Anisha Singh, the group’s govt director, in a press release late Saturday. “The worldwide neighborhood, and specifically the USA, continues to fall wanting urgently wanted efforts to guard and safely resettle all Afghan Sikhs and Hindus.”

Movies posted on social media confirmed plumes of black smoke rising from the temple in Kabul’s Bagh-e Bala neighbourhood and gunfire could possibly be heard.

Sikh killed in gunfight

Kabul police stated the gunfight with the militants ended after the final attacker was killed a number of hours after the assault started. They stated one Sikh was killed and 7 others have been wounded within the assault and a Taliban safety drive was killed through the rescue operation. It was unclear what number of ISIS militants have been concerned or what number of have been killed within the gunbattle with the Taliban.

Earlier this month, Indian officers held talks with the Taliban in Kabul for the primary time for the reason that group took management of the nation final 12 months on the distribution of humanitarian assist. The Indian delegation was led by J.P. Singh, a secretary within the Exterior Affairs Ministry.

It wasn’t instantly clear whether or not J.P. Singh was the “Hindu” ISIS referred to in its assertion or what feedback he might need made that provoked the ISIS assault. It was additionally unclear why the extremist group would goal a Sikh temple in retaliation for feedback made by an Indian official.

Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, tweeted late Saturday: “Shocked by the cowardly terrorist assault towards the Karte Parwan Gurudwara in Kabul.

Modi added, “I condemn this barbaric assault, and pray for the protection and well-being of the devotees”

Taliban launch crackdown on ISIS

An ISIS affiliate, often known as Islamic State in Khorasan Province or IS-Ok, has been working in Afghanistan since 2014. It’s seen as the best safety problem dealing with the nation’s Taliban rulers, who seized energy in Kabul and elsewhere within the nation final August. They’ve launched a sweeping crackdown towards ISIS in japanese Afghanistan.

In March 2020, a lone ISIS gunman rampaged by a distinct Sikh temple in Kabul, killing 25 worshippers, together with a baby, and wounding eight others. As many as 80 worshippers have been trapped contained in the gurdwara because the gunman lobbed grenades and fired an automated rifle into the group.

The Sikh Coalition has advocated for the resettlement of Afghan Sikhs and Hindus for the reason that 2020 assault. Throughout his presidential marketing campaign, U.S. President Joe Biden supported resettlement for these households. Lawmakers on each side of the aisle within the Home and Senate additionally advocated for resettlement. Regardless of these reveals of help, nevertheless, little has been achieved to assist Afghan Sikhs and Hindus to go away the nation or help these briefly evacuated to nations together with India.

There have been fewer than 700 Sikhs and Hindus in Afghanistan on the time of the 2020 assault. Since then, dozens of households have left however many can’t financially afford to maneuver and have remained in Afghanistan, primarily in Kabul, Jalalabad and Ghazni.

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