Rocket attack in Kabul during President’s Eid speech

Kabul, Aug 21 : Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s speech marking the beginning of Eid al-Adha was interrupted by a rocket attack that struck Kabul on Tuesday, followed by several explosions.

Ghani was addressing  the nation ahead of Eid al-Adha, the most important holiday in the Muslim calendar.

The rocket struck the Afghan capital at 9 a.m., without causing any casualties, followed by a series of unidentified blasts, police spokesperson Hashmat Stanekzai .

The sound of the blasts could be heard as Ghani spoke live on television.

“If they (militants) think this nation would bow under the rocket attacks, this is a brave, and standing nation and forever will defend its sovereignty, independence and Islamic values,” Ghani said after the explosions.

He assured that Afghan security forces “have full readiness and this (explosions) and other incidents will be controlled”.

“This war, suicide attacks and explosions have no religious justification,” Ghani said, adding that according to a recent survey 93 per cent of Afghans favoured peace.

On Sunday, the Afghan President had proposed a ceasefire from August 20 to November 20 (birth anniversary of Prophet Muhammad, or Milad-ul-Nabi), however, it remains in limbo pending a response from the insurgents.

If implemented, this would be the second ceasefire by the Afghan government during the 17 years of conflict, following one earlier in June during the Eid ul-Fitr festivities.

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