Three tourists and an Afghan shot dead in Afghanistan attack – The Guardian

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Three foreign tourists and an Afghan civilian have been killed in a shooting attack in Bamiyan province, central Afghanistan, the interior ministry said.

Four suspects were arrested at the scene in Bamiyan, a major tourist area, and officials said an investigation was under way. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the late-evening attack.

“One Afghan and three foreign nationals were killed” in gunfire on Friday evening in Bamiyan city, the interior ministry spokesperson, Abdul Mateen Qani, told Agence France-Presse.

Another four foreigners and three Afghans were wounded, he added, without giving the nationalities of the foreign victims.

A resident, who did not want to be named, said he “heard the sounds of successive gunshots, and the city streets leading to the site were blocked immediately by the security forces”.

Mountainous Bamiyan is home to a Unesco world heritage site and the remains of two giant Buddha statues which were blown up by the Taliban during their previous rule in 2001.

Since taking over Afghanistan in 2021, the Taliban have vowed to restore security and encourage a small but growing number of tourists into the country.

The attack on Friday was among the most serious targeting foreign nationals since foreign forces left the country and the Taliban took over.

The Taliban government “strongly condemns this crime, expresses its deep feelings to the families of the victims and assures that all the criminals will be found and punished”, Qani said in a statement.

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Blame is likely to fall on the Islamic State group’s affiliate in Afghanistan, a major Taliban rival. IS militants have carried out scores of attacks on schools, hospitals, mosques and minority Shia areas throughout the country.

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