17 August 2019 Kabul bombing

17 August 2019 Kabul bombing
Part of the War in Afghanistan (2001–present)
Bombing site is located in Afghanistan
Bombing site
Bombing site
Bombing site (Afghanistan)
Bombing site is located in Kabul
Bombing site
Bombing site
Bombing site (Kabul)
LocationKabul, Afghanistan
Coordinates34°30′03″N 69°08′43″E / 34°30′03″N 69°08′43″E / 34.5007; 69.1452
10:40 p.m. (AFT; UTC+04:30)
TargetShia Hazara civilians
Attack type
Suicide bombing
WeaponsExplosive belt
Deaths92
Injured142
PerpetratorsIslamic State of Iraq and the Levant – Khorasan Province
MotiveAnti-Shi'ism
 

On 17 August 2019, a suicide bombing took place during a wedding in a wedding hall in Kabul, Afghanistan. At least 92 people were killed in the attack and over 140 injured.[1][2][3][4][5] The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant claimed responsibility for the bombing, stating that the attack targeted the Shi'ites.[6] More than 1,000 people were gathered for the wedding when the attack took place.[7][6] The attack occurred a day before the 100th Afghan Independence Day, causing the government to postpone the planned celebrations taking place at the Darul Aman Palace.[8] It was the deadliest attack in Kabul since January 2018.[9]

Attack

The suicide bombing occurred at approximately 10:40 p.m. Afghanistan Time (UTC+04:30) in western Kabul, in an area heavily populated by the Shia Hazara minority, inside the "Dubai City" wedding hall.[10][11] The suicide bomber detonated the explosives in the men's section[12] of the wedding hall, near the stage where musicians were playing,[13] at a time when hundreds were inside the building for a wedding ceremony.[14] The bomber detonated a suicide vest packed with ball bearings.[15]

The explosion occurred shortly before the wedding ceremony was supposed to start.[13] According to the wedding hall's owner, more than 1,200 people had been invited to the event, with a mixed group of Shi'ites and Sunnis attending.[16] Most of the attendees were ethnic Hazaras.[6] Both the bride and the groom were Shi'ite,[6] and both from modest working class families, with the groom working as a tailor.[15] Their families had discussed how to schedule the timing of the wedding to try to minimize the risk of an attack.[15]

At least 63 people were initially killed and 182 injured. While the bride and groom survived, both lost several family members. Many children were also among those killed.[6] 17 more people succumbed to their injuries in the days after the attack, bringing the death toll to 80.[5] The final death toll was put at 92.