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Iran Parliament speaker warns of plot to stoke ethnic, religious discord in Afghanistan

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
The Taliban members investigate inside a Shia mosque after a terrorist bomb attack in the northeastern Afghan city of Kunduz on October 8, 2021. (Photo by AFP)

Iranian Parliament Speaker Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf has condemned a recent terrorist attack targeting worshippers at a packed Shia mosque in the northeastern Afghan city of Kunduz, warning that enemies are plotting to stoke religious and ethnic discord in the country.

“Ethnic and religious discord is the new security project of the Afghan nation’s enemies, which is being carried out by terrorist groups backed by the United States,” Qalibaf said at an open session of the Parliament on Sunday.

“Heads of the Muslim countries should wisely rely on unity among Muslim nations to hinder the activities of Takfiri groups and ensure unity and security across the region.”

The Iranian official extended his condolences to the Afghan people over the attack on Friday, which killed dozens of innocent Afghans, and said the brutal crime by Takfiri terrorists was a great pain for all the freedom-seeking nations in the world.

The top Iranian parliamentarian emphasized that Afghan authorities are duty-bound to ensure security for the people and should punish the perpetrators of this terrorist act.

They should also adopt the necessary strategies to prevent the recurrence of such incidents, he said.

The blast happened as worshipers were saying prayers at the mosque in the Khanabad Bandar area.

The Daesh-K, the Afghan branch of the Takfiri terrorist outfit, claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement issued on its Amaq news channel. The attack was an apparent attempt to stir conflict between Shias and Afghanistan’s Sunni majority.

On Saturday, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei called on Afghanistan’s authorities to punish the perpetrators of the act of terror.

“Authorities in the neighboring and brotherly country of Afghanistan are seriously expected to punish the bloodthirsty perpetrators of this heinous crime and take necessary measures to prevent a recurrence of such tragedies,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.

Daesh has maintained a foothold in eastern and northern Afghanistan following the United States’ hasty withdrawal from the country, which led to the collapse of the Afghan government in mid-August.

The terrorist group has claimed responsibility for several attacks against the Taliban recently. It has also targeted Shias in Syria and Iraq in the past. Controlling almost the entire Afghanistan, the Taliban have vowed to eradicate Daesh.

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