At least 100 people died in a deadly attack on a mosque in the Afghan city of Kunduz on Friday.
Shiite Muslim worshippers were in the mosque during the explosion, a Taliban police official said.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility. But militants from the Islamic State group have a long history of attacking Afghanistan’s Shiite minority.
Dost Mohammad Obaida, the deputy police chief for Kunduz province, said that the “majority of them died,” in reference to the victims.
He said the attack may have been carried out by a suicide bomber who had mingled among the worshipers inside the mosque.
“I assure our Shiite brothers that the Taliban is ready to ensure their safety,” Obaida further said.
Photos and video from the scene showed rescuers carrying a body wrapped in a blanket from the mosque to an ambulance.
The blood covered stairs at the entrance of the mosque. Debris from the blast covered the floor.
What will the future hold?
The Taliban said Afghanistan was declaring its “independence,” according to their spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid.
Anas Haqqani, a Taliban leader, said Tuesday the group had finally achieved what they had struggled for 20 years in Afghanistan.
“What we achieved today is the result of the blood of thousands of mujahedeen, loyalty, patience and tolerating the difficulties.”
The Taliban has promised to allow foreigners and Afghans to leave Afghanistan beyond 31 August.
More than 120,000 people have succeeded to go out of Afghanistan, including around 6,000 Americans.
The group spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid declared the group is now busy with securing and operating the site.
He further indicated that they were in talks with Qatar and Turkey about the facility’s future.