Pakistan-Afghanistan Update: Suicide Bombers Target Shikarpur Shia Mosque; Gunmen Attack Kandahar Hospital

Topline

  • A team of four suicide bombers targeted a Shia mosque and Eid prayer ground in Shikarpur on Monday; thirteen people were injured and one of the attackers was reportedly arrested, but no claim of responsibility has been reported. Two gunmen attacked Kandahar’s Mirwais hospital on Monday before being killed by Afghan security forces; a NDS was officer was injured or killed (reports vary) but provincial officials say no hospital staff or patients were hurt. The Afghan High Peace Council issued a statement attributing delays in the announcement of a peace agreement between the government and the Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin to unspecified “technical issues”, but also said the “final agreement has been concluded” and insisted that both Pres. Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah were supportive of the deal. Leaders and residents of both Pakistan and Afghanistan celebrated Eid ul Azha.

Pakistan – Security

Pakistan – Politics and Diplomacy

  • Eid Celebrations: In his statement commemorating the Eid ul Azha holidays, Prime Minister Sharif highlighted residents of Indian Kashmir “who have sacrificed their third generation at the hands of Indian forces”, saying he would “continue to dedicate all coming Eids to the Kashmiris till the issue of Kashmir is resolved in accordance with their wishes”. Chief of Army Staff Raheel Sharif visited with soldiers and tribal elders in Bajaur on Tuesday, pledging that the army “would not leave without completing the job of bringing peace, completing rehabilitation and transferring administrative control to an institutionalised mechanism,” according to a military spokesman. [Dawn] [Dawn]
  • PTI Protests: In comments to reporters on Monday, PTI Punjab central region leader Abdul Aleem Khan defended the party’s plans for a protest in Raiwind, in what party officials now say will not be a direct march on the prime minister’s residence. [Dawn]
  • Government to Appeal Supreme Court Cabinet Ruling: The Express Tribune reports that the government is preparing a review petition seeking to appeal a Supreme Court ruling that held that the prime minister could not take certain financial measures or issue ordinances without the full review and approval of the cabinet, and will likely file after Eid.

Pakistan – Remainders

  • Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Ltd Reports ‘Mafia’ in Three Khyber Paktunkhwa Districts Has Taken Over Infrastructure [Dawn]
  • Farooq Sattar’s Condition Improving, Hospital Officials Report [Dawn] [ET]
  • German Firm Increases Compensation Payment for Baldia Factory Fire Victims [AFP]
  • National Assembly Committee to Visit Gwadar [Dawn]

Afghanistan – Security

  • Attacks and Operations: Two gunmen wearing suicide vests attacked Kandahar’s Mirwais hospital on Monday; reports variously suggest a National Directorate of Security officer was killed or injured before the gunmen were killed by Afghan security forces. Pajhwok reports the attackers were dressed as doctors and planning to attack a visiting government delegation. A spokesman for the provincial governor said no hospital staff or patients were injured; no claim of responsibility has been reported. In a statement on Tuesday, Kandahar provincial police chief vowed that he would not return to the province until the Uruzgan provincial capital of Tirin Kot was “fully cleared” of Taliban fighters. [TOLO] [TOLO] [TOLO]

Afghanistan – Politics and Diplomacy

  • Hezb-e-Islami Peace Agreement: The High Peace Council issued a statement on Monday attributed the delayed completion of a peace agreement between the Hezb-e-Islami Gulbuddin and the Afghan government to “technical issues,” but also saying that “a final agreement has been concluded” and denying suggestions that either Pres. Ghani or Chief Executive Abdullah were not fully supportive of the agreement. [AFP]
  • Eid Celebrations: In his Eid remarks on Monday, Balkh governor Atta Mohammad Noor praised Afghan security forces but criticized their leadership, accusing them of “leav[ing] the sons of the poor in the wars alone” and accusing unnamed police officials of facilitating suicide bombing attacks in Balkh.

Afghanistan – Remainders

  • India and Afghanistan Expected to Sign Extradition Treaty [TOLO]
  • 22 Indians Reported to Have Joined ISIS in Afghanistan [Khaama Press]
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