Officials in Afghanistan say heavily armed suicide bombers Wednesday stormed a minority Sikh worship place in Kabul, killing at least 25 worshippers and injuring at least eight others.
Islamic State claimed credit for plotting the deadly raid in a central part of the Afghan capital, according to the Site Intelligence Group provides alerts and translations of jihadist media outlets.
Shortly after the early morning attack began, Afghan security forces surrounded the temple and killed all four assailants in a standoff that lasted more than five hours, said Tariq Arian, a spokesman for the Interior Ministry. He did not immediately offer details about the number of casualties.
He noted dozens of people trapped inside the temple during the siege were also rescued. Some 150 people were inside the temple and adjacent community center, Anar Kali Hunaryar, a minority parliamentarian, told VOA.
The Islamist Taliban swiftly distanced itself from the attack saying the insurgent group was not involved.
Afghanistan’s minority Sikh and Hindu communities have been targeted numerous times by Islamic extremists in recent years. A suicide bomber killed 17 members of the two religious minorities, including a parliamentarian, in the eastern city of Jalalabad in 2018.
Islamic State also took responsibly for that attack.