12 killed, 23 injured as blast rocks E. Afghanistan's Khost city

US ready to work with Pakistan to promote regional peace

12 killed, 23 injured as blast rocks E. Afghanistan's Khost city

An estimated one million people have registered to take part in the ballot to date, Glasse added, still well short of the government's target of 15 million registrations by mid-June. The attack was claimed by the Taliban.

In addition, 22-year-old United States soldier, Gabriel Conde, was also killed that day in a combat operation in the east of the country - the first U.S. combat death in Afghanistan since January 1.

"We are aware of the abduction of Indian nationals from Baghlan province in Afghanistan.We are in contact with the Afghan authorities and further details are being ascertained", read a statement issued by the MEA.

People had gathered for afternoon prayers at the mosque, which was also being used as a voter registration centre.

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The blast was caused by a bomb placed in the mosque, rather than by a suicide bomber, Khost's Chief of Police Basir Bina told CNN. The provincial governor blamed the Taliban, though no one has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping.

Baghlan Police spokesperson Zabihullah Shuja said that the engineers were travelling to a government-run power station in a minibus when unknown gunmen abducted them and their Afghan driver.

However, provincial deputy director of public health Gul Mohammad Mangal said at least 12 people had been killed and 33 wounded in the explosion. IS is not proven to own an existence in Khost, but has enlarged its footprint into other places in recent decades.

An Afghan wounded man lays on a trolley as others rush him to a hospital following blast at a voter registration centre in Khost Province on May 6, 2018.

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