New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday strongly condemned terror attack in Afghanistan's Jalalabad which targeted the Sikh community there and killed at least 20.
Many of those killed in Sunday's blast belonged to the small Sikh minority, according to provincial government officials. PM Modi, while expressing his condolences, said it was an attack on Afghanistan's diversity. "We strongly condemn the terror attacks in Afghanistan yesterday. They're an attack on Afghanistan's multicultural fabric. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. I pray that the injured recover soon," he tweeted. "India stands ready to assist Afghanistan govt in this sad hour."
We strongly condemn the terror attacks in Afghanistan yesterday. They are an attack on Afghanistan's multicultural fabric. My thoughts are with the bereaved families. I pray that the injured recover soon. India stands ready to assist the Afghanistan government in this sad hour.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 2, 2018
Foreign minister Sushma Swarj too took to Twitter to offer her condolences.
My heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims of the terror attack in Jalalabad city of Afghanistan. We are with them in this hour of tragedy.
I am meeting their relatives today at 6 pm in JN Bhavan.
— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) July 2, 2018
The tragic incident happened just hours after Afghan president Ashraf Ghani had inaugurated a hospital in the city. It left many shops and buildings damaged around Mukhaberat square here. Police officials said that the blast was triggered by a suicide bomber who reportedly targeted a vehicle carrying Sikhs who were heading to meet Ghani.
While Afghanistan is a Muslim country, there are Hindu and Sikh minority communities here as well. And while no one has claimed responsibility for the blasts so far, it is being strongly suspected that resurfacing of tensions with the Taliban, and Ghani's order to resume retaliation against them, may have led to the most recent attack.
(With inputs from Reuters)