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30 die in Taliban attack, Afghan president escapes

A Taliban suicide bomber has attacked an election rally in Afghanistan’s Central Parwan Province, killing at least thirty people and wounding thirty-one others.

The attack, the deadliest such bombing to happen near an election, took place shortly before President Ashraf Ghani was due to address the rally.  He escaped unhurt.

The bombings also came eleven days ahead of presidential elections, which the Taliban vowed to violently disrupt.

Analysts say the latest spate of bloodshed may have been the Taliban’s response to failed peace talks between the insurgent group and the US.

Mr. Ghani, who is seeking a second five-year term, was standing nearby, when a suicide bomber attacked the gathering, said a local government official.

In a separate incident, a blast went off in the center of the capital Kabul, sending ambulances and troops scampering to the blast site.

The people of Afghanistan are due to vote in presidential and national elections on September 28. The Taliban has condemned the vote, and every other exercise before it, as illegitimate.

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