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Afghan Police Discover Mass Graves After Village Attack


Residents on August 16 held funerals for several victims of the raid.

Afghan police have discovered mass graves containing the bodies of at least 36 victims of a recent militant attack on a village, officials have said.

Provincial government spokesman Zabihullah Amani said on August 16 that one grave in the northern province of Sar-e Pul contained 28 bodies and another held eight.

"Most of the victims were beheaded," he said, noting that all were men, except for three boys between the ages of 8 and 15.

A third mass grave had been located in an area under Taliban control, Amani said, adding that security forces were searching for more possible graves.

Residents on August 16 held funerals for several victims of the raid.

The office of the Sari Pul governor said at least 62 people had been confirmed dead in the attack on the Mirzawalang village last week, with the number expected to rise.

Afghanistan's Independent Human Rights Commission said a preliminary probe suggested that militants from the Taliban and Islamic State (IS) militant groups, who are normally bitter enemies, acted together.

The Taliban, however, said it had carried out the attack alone and did not kill any civilians.

IS issued a statement on August 14 claiming it had led the attack and killed about 54 Shi'ite Muslims, a minority group in Afghanistan that has often come under attack from IS.

Based on reporting by Reuters and Tolonews.com
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