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A suicide bomber outside an Afghanistan mosque on Friday morning killed 45 people and wounded 60.
The explosion occurred in front of the Eid Gah mosque in Maymana, the capital of the Faryab Province. Top officials were inside the mosque to participate in prayers for the Eid al-Adha Muslim holiday. The New York Times reports that 25 of the Afghan national security forces were killed in the blast.
It’s unclear if the attack was aimed at the security officials who were killed. Deputy Governor Abdul Satar Barez told AFP news agency he believes that they were the target.
Barez was also in the mosque. He described the explosion saying, “Suddenly a big explosion took place and the area was full of dust and smoke and body parts of police and civilians were all over the place. It was a very powerful explosion.”
Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzai made a statement condemning the attack, saying “Those who are taking away the happiness of Muslims during the Eid al-Adha days are the enemies of Islam, and you cannot call them human or Muslim.”
The attack is the worst of several on Friday. Officials said six children were killed in the blast.
A doctor in the mosque at the time of the attack told Associated Press reporters, “There was blood and dead bodies everywhere. It was a massacre.”
Officals say the attack could be revenge for the death of the shadow governor Pashtun Kot District on Wednesday but no group has admitted to the attack yet.