At least 11 women were killed in a stampede at an Afghan football stadium on Wednesday as officials said thousands had gathered to apply for visas to leave the country.
A spokesman for the governor of eastern Nangarhar province, Ataullah Khogyani, said 13 more people, mostly women, were injured at the Jalalabad Stadium, where they were trying to get visas to enter Pakistan.
Most of the dead were elderly and came from across Afghanistan, he said.
Separately, an attack by Taliban militants in northern Afghanistan killed at least 36 Afghan police.
It was the deadliest attack since the Taliban and the Afghan government began late peace talks last month, part of a process that began in February under an agreement between the United States and the insurgents. Was These talks are being seen as the best opportunity for peace in the country after decades of war.
Rahim Danish, director of the northern Takhar Central Hospital, confirmed the bodies of 36 people and said eight more security personnel were injured.
An Afghan security official said the forces were in a convoy that was ambushed. The official, who was not authorized to provide brief information to the media at the event and spoke on condition of anonymity, was set on fire by several policemen. The deputy government chief was among those killed, provincial government spokesman Jawad Hijri said.
A Taliban spokesman, Zabihullah Mujahid, claimed responsibility for the attack.
“Why are the Taliban killing Afghans?” Afghan President Ashraf Ghani told parliament. He advised in the “False Tale of Victory” after the recent attacks, especially in Helmand Province, that the Taliban still believed.
The Pakistani consulate in Nangarhar has been closed for about eight months due to the corona virus epidemic. A large number of mob officials decided to use the stadium and assigned 320 staff to help manage the process, Khogyani said.
The Pakistani embassy in Kabul said it had issued more than 19,000 visas in the past week alone, following the approval of a “friendly” visa policy by Islamabad and the opening of the border in September after months of closure.
Millions of Afghans have fled Pakistan to escape war and economic hardship, while thousands go back and forth for work and business or health care.
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