A blast near a football field in Afghanistan has claimed at least three lives and has injured 11 others. According to reports, no group has so far claimed responsibility for the blast which comes just two days after the United States and the Taliban signed a peace deal in Doha. As per reports, the incident took place on Monday afternoon in Afghanistan's Khost province near the Pakistan border when residents were playing a match in the football pitch.
The peace agreement between the United States and the Taliban was signed after a week-long 'Reduction In Violence' period. The deal would see a gradual reduction of US and NATO troops in Afghanistan over the next 14 months and it includes a dialogue between the Taliban and the Afghan government who are supposed to exchange prisoners before the talks resume. However, a Taliban spokesperson on Monday said that they will continue to attack government forces if 5,000 Taliban prisoners held by the government were not released.
The latest statement from the Taliban came a day after Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said that his government never committed to releasing Taliban fighters who are currently in prison. Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid while talking to the media said that if the 5,000 Taliban prisoners are not released by the government there will be no intra-Afghan talks.
The United States and the Taliban signed the peace deal after 18 months of negotiations and 20 years of war. The deal was signed in the presence of leaders from Pakistan, Qatar, Turkey, India, Indonesia, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan. The deal also requires the Taliban to guarantee that Afghan soil would not be used as a launchpad that would threaten the security of the United States and its allies. The deal was signed by US special envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban political chief Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar with Mike Pompeo as a witness
Image Credit: AP