Attacks on Afghan vote centres leave 63 dead

Site of an attack at the Marshal Fahim military academy in Kabul

There are 21 women and five children among the dead, and several injured are in critical conditions. The AP reports the bomb's vibration could be felt across the city, shattering windows miles away. Police blocked all roads to the blast site, with only ambulances allowed in.

The Islamic State (IS) extremist group claimed responsibility for the attack through its Amaq news agency. "It was a suicide attack", Dawood Amin, city police chief, told AFP.

The attack was the latest in a series of assaults on voter registration centers across the country, fueling concern over the impact on turnout in the upcoming parliamentary and district council elections.

The attacks occurred in adjacent provincial districts, Qala-e-Naw and Qadia, and occurred the day after at least 57 people died in a bombing of a voter registration center in Kabul.

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The terrorist group Daesh (IS) has taken responsibility for the Kabul attack while no group has owned the attack in Baghlan province so far. They were originally scheduled to be held in October 2016, but due to election reforms and security situation the parliamentary elections were postponed to July 2018 and then to October this year. Also, in the explosion committed by a suicide bomber in the crowd celebrating Nowruz, near the state University hospital of Ali-Abad in Kabul, killing at least 26 people. Two suicide bombings claimed by IS took place just last month in which almost 40 people were killed.

General John Nicholson, the top USA and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) commander in Afghanistan, told Tolo TV last month that he expected the Taleban to carry out more suicide attacks this fighting season. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid claimed the Badghis attacks in a statement to the media.

Unless the process of registering millions of voters can be completed before winter starts in November, the parliamentary elections would nearly certainly have to be postponed until next year.

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