7 killed in Afghanistan blast near mosque

On May 31, a massive truck bombing of the Afghan capital's diplomatic section killed more than 150 people and injured hundreds of others, including foreigners.

Afghanistan's Ministry of Interior Affairs on Tuesday said a terrorist attack targeting the Great Mosque of Herat killed at least seven people and injured 16 others.

Media cell of the military reported that the forum reviewed regional security environment in the backdrop of recent terrorist incidents in Afghanistan. "We want to talk peace with the Taliban, but [this is] not open-ended opportunity", he said.

Representatives from 25 countries and alliances, including the U.S., Russia, China, India, Pakistan, NATO and European Union are at the Kabul Initiative Peace and Security Cooperation conference that aims to find an "Afghan-led and Afghan-owned" resolution of the decades-long conflict that has left tens of thousands of people dead.

Afghan authorities have said Pakistan was involved in the attack, charges denied by Islamabad.

Police said the blast, described as "one of the biggest" to hit the Afghan capital, occurred in Zanbaq Square.

Ghani made no clear new initiatives at the peace talks but said the government was ready to meet with the Taliban anywhere and would agree to their opening an official office where representatives of both sides could convene.

The incidents comes just after Afghanistan President Ashraf Ghani announced the "Kabul Process", an initiative to "secure worldwide consensus to end transnational financing of terrorism". The last four decades had been a fight for the survival of democracy with an intervening ten years span of General Musharraf's regime.

"We have seen other attempts at peace but majority haven't been here in the Afghan capital, majority have been outside of the country", Glasse said.

Mr Ghani's government has faced protests for failing to tackle the deteriorating security situation.

"What we need is an agreement on regional security."Since the global military mission declared an end to its combat mission in 2014, the Taliban have made steady gains".

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the bombing but Afghanistan alleged Pakistani involvement in the blast.

UK Ambassador Dominic Jermey said it was "an important marker for each and every country in the region to show its true support for Afghanistan's aspirations for peace". He said Afghanistan had provided its preconditions for negotiations to the Taliban, but it remains unclear whether the group's leaders represented all factions. In the past few months, Russian Federation has hosted a number of Afghanistan conferences involving China, Pakistan and Iran.

  • Larry Hoffman