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DW.com, March 13, 2021

Afghanistan: Car bomb kills at least 7, injures over 50 in Herat province

Herat Governor Sayed Abdul Wahid Qatali said dozens of homes and shops were damaged by the explosion, with women and children included among the dead

A car bomb in Afghanistan's western Herat province has left at least seven people dead, as global powers seek a permanent ceasefire to the ongoing conflict.

A car bomb detonated in Afghanistan's western Herat province late Friday, killing at least 7 people and injuring 53 others, authorities said.A car bomb in Afghanistan's western Herat province has left at least seven people dead, as global powers seek a permanent ceasefire to the ongoing conflict.

A car bomb detonated in Afghanistan's western Herat province late Friday, killing at least 7 people and injuring 53 others, authorities said.Although no group has claimed responsibility for the blast, local authorities have blamed the Taliban for the incident. The Sunni fundamentalist Taliban has been waging an insurgency against the Western-backed Afghan government for nearly two decades.

Global powers seek stable Afghan government to ensure securityThe explosion comes as Russia declared its support for a US initiative to include the Taliban in a future interim Afghan government. Global powers are seeking a governing arrangement for Afghanistan that would ensure security in a country ravaged by war.

"The formation of an interim inclusive administration would be a logical solution to the problem of integrating the Taliban into the peaceful political life of Afghanistan," Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said during a press briefing Friday, adding that decisions should be "made by the Afghans themselves."

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani has rejected the idea of an interim government for Afghanistan, arguing that any new government should result from elections.

US working with Russia, China to achieve ceasefireThe United States has been working with Russia, China and other countries to achieve a political settlement for Afghanistan and a permanent ceasefire between warring factions.

"We do believe Russia, as well as other countries in the region, have an important stake in a secure and stable Afghanistan," State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Friday.

Russia will hold an international conference on March 18 with representatives from the Afghan government to discuss a way forward for the country. Diplomatic discussions between the Afghan government and the Taliban in the Qatari capital of Doha have stalled, with Turkey also hosting peace talks in Istanbul next month.

Biden deliberating whether to abide by Trump-era Taliban dealPresident Joe Biden's administration is currently deliberating whether it would abide by a February 2020 deal with the Taliban brokered by former-President Donald Trump. Under the agreement, all US troops would leave Afghanistan by May 1.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken recently told Ghani in a letter that all options are on the table, including full US withdrawal by May 1. US forces have been in Afghanistan since 2001 following the September 11 terrorist attacks by the jihadi organization al Qaida.

Category: Taliban/ISIS/Terrorism, Women, Children - Views: 858