Islamic State Claims Responsibility for Deadly Kabul Minibus Explosion, Killing 5 in Shiite Neighborhood

ISLAMABAD, Afghanistan – The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for a deadly minibus explosion in the Afghan capital that targeted Shiite Muslims, leaving at least five people dead and 15 others wounded. The attack took place in Kabul’s western Shiite neighborhood of Dashti Barchi, a location that has been repeatedly targeted by the Islamic State group’s affiliate in Afghanistan.

The Sunni militant group referred to the Shiite Muslims as disbelievers and stated that its members detonated an explosive device on the bus, marking the first attack in the country in 2024. The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan has called for an end to targeted attacks on civilians and for greater protection for the country’s Hazara community, to which many of the victims belonged.

In recent months, the Islamic State group has carried out multiple attacks in the Dashti Barchi area, targeting schools, hospitals, mosques, and other Shiite areas across the country. The militant group’s actions have led to widespread condemnation from the international community.

The Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan has been a major rival of the Taliban since their takeover of the country in 2021. The Taliban’s Defense Minister Mohammad Yaqoob Mujahid claimed that there has been a 90% decrease in attacks by the IS affiliate in the past year, but the recent deadly explosion in Kabul demonstrates the ongoing threat posed by the group.

The Islamic State’s continued targeting of Shiite Muslims and other civilians highlights the ongoing security challenges facing Afghanistan, as the country grapples with internal conflicts and regional instability. The deadly minibus explosion in Kabul serves as a stark reminder of the threats posed by extremist groups in the region and the need for sustained efforts to ensure the safety and security of all Afghan citizens.