Afghanistan’s last Sikhs targeted in terror attack

From ABC News and The Telegraph

ISLAMABAD — Several explosions and gunfire ripped through a Sikh temple in Afghanistan’s capital Saturday killing one person and wounding seven others, a Taliban official said. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. The United News of India is in no doubt that the terrorists responsible were of ISIS Khorasan. It would seem likely. 

Gunmen attacked the Sikh house of worship, known as a gurdwara, in Kabul and a gunbattle between the attackers and Taliban fighters ensued, said Abdul Nafi Takor, a Taliban-appointed spokesperson for the Interior Ministry.

He said a vehicle full of explosives was detonated outside of the temple but that resulted in no casualties. “First the gunmen threw a hand grenade which caused a fire near the gate,” he said.

Khalid Zadran, a spokesman for the Kabul police chief, said the police operation ended after the last attacker was killed several hours later. He did not say how many attackers were involved.

Zadran said one Sikh was killed and seven others were wounded in the attack and a Taliban security force was also killed during the rescue operation.

Sikh leaders said around 30 people were in the temple at the time of the attack and the number of casualties may rise. “Generally at that time in the morning we have several Sikh devotees who come to offer prayers at the gurdwara,” Gurnam Singh told AFP.

Afghanistan’s once rich and populous Sikh population has largely fled to India after decades of persecution and increasing extremism.

According to United India the Indian government is concerned and monitoring the situation. Puneet Singh Chandhok, president of the Indian World Forum has asked the Indian government about repatriating the minorities left in Afghanistan as a priority.  The neighbourhood is also home to a number of minority Hindu families.


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