The militant Islamic organization governing Afghanistan caught three terrorists who were behind the bomb on a road outside the Eid Gah mosque in the capital, spokesman Bilal Karimi announced. The blast killed two and wounded three others, Karimi explained, although according to other reports, all five had died.
While no organization had taken accountability for the attack — the worst in Afghanistan since the chaotic departure of US troops in August — government forces later raided an ISIS-K cell and killed all the terrorists connected to it, the group unveiled.
“A special unit … carried out an operation against ISIS insurgents,” tweeted chief spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.
“As a result of this operation, which was very decisive and successful, the ISIS center was completely destroyed and all the ISIS members in it were killed,” he announced, without elaborating on the specific number of fatalities.
Mohammad Israil, a Kabul resident, explained he heard "a loud sound" and saw people running away.
An Italian-funded emergency hospital in Kabul tweeted it had received four people wounded in the blast.
The organization provided no further details about the raid in the northern Kabul neighborhood of Khair Khana, including whether any Taliban troops were hurt or killed during the operation.
Local media had reported heavy clashes in the area and residents announced they heard explosions and gunfire throughout the night.
The mosque blast earlier Sunday came as Taliban officials had gathered to mourn the passing of Mujahid’s mother. The organization has insisted that those killed or wounded were civilians.
Other authorities, though, explained that the mosque entrance was being prepared Sunday for a slate of public executions for those convicted of kidnappings and murders.
While no organization has claimed responsibility for the bomb, suspicion promptly fell on the local ISIS affiliate, which has ramped up attacks against its Taliban enemy — including the suicide blast that killed 13 US service members as well as 169 Afghans.
ISIS re-emerged in Afghanistan in 2020 after being weakened by a heavy US bombing campaign directed against them in the eastern portion of the nation in 2019.
They were accused of a horrific attack in 2020 on a maternity hospital that killed 24 people, including newborn babies. Earlier this year, they were accused of a deadly attack on a school in Afghanistan’s mostly Shiite neighborhood of Dasht-e-Barchi that killed over 80 students.