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Perpetrators of Takhar mosque attack be tried: HIA

Perpetrators of Takhar mosque attack be tried: HIA

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On
Aug 13, 2017 - 21:58

KABULinfo-icon (Pajhwok): The Hezb-i-Islamiinfo-icon Afghanistaninfo-icon (HIA) on Sunday said it strongly and resolutely condemned every act resulting in the killing and torture of innocent people, disowning and distancing itself from all perpetrators of such attacks.

Officials in northeastern Takhar province said gunmen loyal to a former HIA commander opened fire at worshippers inside a mosque in Ab Chah district on Friday, killing three people and injuring 11 more.

They said people were offering Friday’s prayers when they were attacked at 1pm following a clash between gunmen loyal to militia commander Bashir Qanat and local illegal gunmen over the appointment of a prayer leader ahead of the prayers.

Ex-HIA commander Bashir Qanat had asked the mosqueinfo-icon imam, Mualvi Mehfoozullah, to leave the mosque, but the imaminfo-icon continued to lead prayers, triggering a clash between the two sides on Friday.

A statement from Hekmatyar-led HIA media office received by Pajhwok Afghan News said the Friday’s attack on worshipers was illicit and evil act from HIA point of view and it strongly condemned it.

The statement offered its sympathies to the victims and said the HIA awaited results of investigations by government organs into the issue.

“It should be clarified that the clash was not between two political rival parties, nor between two factions belonging to one party and nor a preplanned.”

The HIA statement further added the incident was unexpected and the mosque imam had differences with commander Qanat from the past as he had been criticizing the commander’s performance and actions in sermons.

The statement said supporters of Commander Qanat had repeatedly asked the Imam to avoid speaking against the commander. However, the Imam didn’t pay heed .

The commander’s supporters tried to prevent the propaganda of the imam during Friday’s prayers and later the dispute sparked a clash between the two sides that resulted in the killing of three people and injuries to 11 others, it added.

The statement said Commander Qanat wasn’t present at the place of the incident and the firing was also not ordered by him.

The HIA demanded trial and punishment of the incident’s perpetrators, the statement said, adding it asked local officials to take immediate and serious steps for arresting those involved in the shooting.

sns/ma

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