Singapore Markets close in 1 hr 12 mins

Islamic State suicide bomber kills 57 in Afghan capital

RAHIM FAIEZ

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An Islamic State suicide bomber attacked a voter registration center in Afghanistan's capital on Sunday, killing 57 people and wounding more than 100 others, officials said.

Public Health Ministry spokesman Wahid Majro said that among 57 people killed, 22 were women and eight were children. He said 119 people were wounded, among them 17 children and 52 women, and "the tolls could still rise."

The bomber targeted civilians who were registering for national identification cards, Kabul police chief Gen. Daud Amin said.

The large explosion echoed across the city, shattering windows miles from the attack site and damaging nearby vehicles. Police blocked all roads to the blast site, with only ambulances allowed in. TV stations broadcast live footage of hundreds of distraught locals gathered at hospitals seeking word about loved ones.

The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the attack in a statement carried by its Aamaq news agency, saying it had targeted Shiite "apostates."

The attack comes almost a month after an IS suicide bomber carried out an attack near a Shiite shrine in Kabul that targeted attendees celebrating the Persian new year. That attack killed 31 people and wounded 65 others.

In a statement issued by the president's office condemned Sunday's attack and quoted President Ashraf Ghani as saying such "terrorist attacks" won't prevent people from participating in upcoming parliamentary elections.

Afghanistan will hold parliamentary elections in October and voter registration started a week ago.

Last week, three police officers guarding voter registration centers in two Afghan provinces were killed by militants, according to authorities.

Afghan security forces have struggled to prevent attacks by the local Islamic State affiliate as well as the more firmly established Taliban since the U.S. and NATO concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014. Both groups regularly carry out attacks, with the Taliban usually targeting the government and security forces and IS targeting the country's Shiite minority.

Both groups want to establish a strict form of Islamic rule in Afghanistan and are opposed to democratic elections.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres condemned the attack and called for those responsible to be brought to justice, in a statement from his spokesman in New York.

Elsewhere in Afghanistan, at least five people were killed when their vehicle struck a roadside bomb in the northern Baghlan province. Zabihullah Shuja, spokesman for the provincial police chief, said four other people were wounded in Sunday's blast in Puli Khomri, the province's capital.

The Taliban routinely target security forces and government officials with roadside bombs, which often end up killing civilians.

In the northern Balkh province, a district police chief died of his wounds after being shot Saturday during an exchange of gunfire with insurgents, according to Sher Jan Durrani, spokesman for the provincial police chief. He said around a dozen insurgents were also killed in the battle, which is still underway.

Durrani identified the slain commander as Halim Khanjar, police chief for the Char Bolak district.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the killing.

___

Associated Press writer Maamoun Youssef in Cairo contributed to this report.

  • Google latest to withdraw from Saudi conference
    Finance
    Reuters

    Google latest to withdraw from Saudi conference

    Pressure has mounted on Saudi Arabia since prominent Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a U.S. resident, Washington Post columnist and critic of Saudi policies, went missing. Google said in a statement that Google Cloud Chief Executive Diane Greene would not attend the Future Investment Initiative Summit

  • Merlin says impact of terror attacks abating, to meet 2018 forecasts
    Finance
    Reuters

    Merlin says impact of terror attacks abating, to meet 2018 forecasts

    Britain's Merlin Entertainments , operator of tourist attractions such as Madame Tussauds, said the impact on its business of terror attacks was abating as it forecast 2018 results in line with market expectations. Merlin, which also runs Legoland, the London Eye, Sea Life and theme parks such as

  • If you're shopping for a new laptop you need to check out Microsoft's new Surface Laptop 2
    Finance
    CNBC

    If you're shopping for a new laptop you need to check out Microsoft's new Surface Laptop 2

    Microsoft's Surface Laptop 2 is an impressive thin-and-light notebook with a good touchscreen display, a great keyboard and solid performance.

  • Amazon likely to buy 7-8 percent stake in Future Retail: TV
    News
    Reuters

    Amazon likely to buy 7-8 percent stake in Future Retail: TV

    (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc is likely to buy an at least 7 percent to 8 percent stake in India's Future Retail Ltd through an investment arm, CNBC-TV 18 reported, citing sources.

  • Amazon likely to buy 7-8 percent stake in India's Future Retail - TV
    Finance
    Reuters

    Amazon likely to buy 7-8 percent stake in India's Future Retail - TV

    (Reuters) - Amazon.com Inc is likely to buy an at least 7 percent to 8 percent stake in India's Future Retail Ltd through an investment arm, CNBC-TV 18 reported, citing sources.

  • AB Volvo warns some truck and bus engines may exceed emission limits
    Finance
    Reuters

    AB Volvo warns some truck and bus engines may exceed emission limits

    Swedish truckmaker Volvo warned on Tuesday that an emissions control component used in its vehicles was degrading more quickly than expected, which could cause engines to exceed emission limits for nitrogen oxides. The company, which makes trucks, construction equipment, buses and engines, said that

  • Spain's Iberdrola sells British power assets to Drax for 800 million euros
    Finance
    Reuters

    Spain's Iberdrola sells British power assets to Drax for 800 million euros

    Spanish utility Iberdrola said on Tuesday it had agreed to sell its stake in its conventional generation assets, held by the company Scottish Power, to Drax for around 801 million euros (704.3 million pounds) as part of its asset rotation plans. The plan, which is included in its 2018-2022 strategy

  • 10 things in tech you need to know today
    Finance
    Business Insider

    10 things in tech you need to know today

    Jeff Bezos said that today's internet is a "confirmation bias machine" that could help autocratic regimes. The Amazon CEO weighed in on the current state of social media at the Wired 25 conference on Monday. Facebook is banning any kind of hoaxes about voting, like false reports of violence

  • Indian insurance companies not covering storage of Iranian oil: IOC official
    Finance
    Reuters

    Indian insurance companies not covering storage of Iranian oil: IOC official

    Indian insurers are not offering coverage policies for storage of Iranian oil, an Indian Oil Corp Ltd official said, owing to impending U.S. sanctions on import of crude from Iran, which are expected to kick in on Nov. 4.

  • Finance
    AFP

    China prices rise as cost of food spikes

    A spike in the price of fruit and vegetables pushed up China's inflation rate in September, official figures showed Tuesday. For the fourth straight month, the consumer price index (CPI) -- an important barometer of retail inflation -- rose, hitting its highest level since February, at 2.5 percent

  • The Trump administration's withdrawal from world affairs is causing chaos, ex-NATO chief says
    Finance
    CNBC

    The Trump administration's withdrawal from world affairs is causing chaos, ex-NATO chief says

    President Donald Trump's "America First" approach to foreign policy is not part of the solution when it comes to restoring international order, according to the former head of NATO.

  • Finance
    Reuters

    EM ASIA FX-Asian currencies firmer on improved sentiment, S.Korean won leads gains

    * Baht resumes trade on strong footing * S.Korean won up on North-South co-operation * Yuan hit by China growth concerns (Adds details on won, yuan and rupiah, updates prices) By Sumeet Gaikwad Oct 16 ...

  • Labour's shares plan for workers has glaring flaws
    Finance
    The Guardian

    Labour's shares plan for workers has glaring flaws

    At the 2018 Labour party conference John McDonnell called for big companies to give 10% of equity to workers. If you thought John McDonnell’s plan to force all big companies to give a collective 10% stake to their workers was a detailed policy announcement, think again. Judging by a comment aimed at

  • Global Markets: Asia stocks edge higher but Saudi tensions limit advance
    Finance
    Reuters

    Global Markets: Asia stocks edge higher but Saudi tensions limit advance

    Asian stocks rose modestly on Tuesday, gaining a firmer footing after a week of heavy losses, although cooling factory-gate inflation in China and increasing tensions between Saudi Arabia and the West have capped gains. MSCI's broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan nudged up 0.25 percent

  • British American Tobacco cuts revenue target for new products
    Finance
    Reuters

    British American Tobacco cuts revenue target for new products

    British American Tobacco , the second-biggest international tobacco company by revenue, cut its full-year revenue target for next-generation products on Tuesday, citing a flat market in Japan and a product recall in the United States. The company said it expected revenue from cigarette alternatives

  • Finance
    Reuters

    Housebuilder Bellway launches cost savings plan, profit up 14 percent

    The homebuilder, among Britain's top 5 by market value, said it was mindful that Britain's forthcoming exit from the European Union could hit consumer confidence in the busy spring selling season and also of rising pressures on building costs. "As housebuilders continue to increase output

  • Still one-in-four chance of no-deal Brexit, say economists - Reuters poll
    Finance
    Reuters

    Still one-in-four chance of no-deal Brexit, say economists - Reuters poll

    There is still a one-in-four chance Britain and the European Union part ways in less than six months without reaching a deal, according to a Reuters poll taken as EU leaders prepare to meet in Brussels later this week. The stubborn problem of resolving the United Kingdom's post-Brexit land border

  • Finance
    AFP

    Bargain hunters to the fore as Tokyo shares close higher

    Tokyo shares closed higher on Tuesday, with investors snapping up bargains after recent losses. The Nikkei 225 index rose 1.25 percent or 277.94 points to end at 22,549.24, while the broader Topix index was higher by 0.74 percent or 12.47 points at 1,687.91. While Wall Street issues slipped overnight

  • Qatar Petroleum signs five-year LPG supply deal with China
    Finance
    Reuters

    Qatar Petroleum signs five-year LPG supply deal with China

    DUBAI (Reuters) - State energy giant Qatar Petroleum said on Tuesday it had signed a five-year agreement to supply China with 600,000 tonnes of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) per year.

  • Finance
    Reuters

    Meggitt upgrades 2018 organic revenue growth outlook

    British engineering company Meggitt raised its estimate for 2018 organic revenue growth to 7 to 8 percent from earlier guidance of 4 to 6 percent, boosted by higher demand for its wheels, brakes, fuel tanks and other aeroplane parts. The upgrade to revenue growth was Meggitt's second in four months

  • China local governments' hidden debt could total $5.8 trillion: S&P
    Finance
    Reuters

    China local governments' hidden debt could total $5.8 trillion: S&P

    Off-balance-sheet borrowings by Chinese local governments could be as high as 40 trillion yuan ($5.78 trillion) and amount to "a debt iceberg with titanic credit risks", S&P Global Ratings said in a report on Tuesday. When including so-called "hidden" local government debt, the ratio

  • TomTom earnings beat expectations on digital mapping sales
    Finance
    Reuters

    TomTom earnings beat expectations on digital mapping sales

    TomTom, the Dutch navigation company, said third-quarter earnings beat expectations, helped by sales of higher margin digital mapping products. On Sept. 18 TomTom shares lost a quarter of their value in one day as Google announced a far-reaching supply deal with a group of carmakers including Renault

  • Trump rhetoric unhelpful for trade talks, says EU's Malmstrom
    Finance
    Reuters

    Trump rhetoric unhelpful for trade talks, says EU's Malmstrom

    The EU's Trade Commissioner said on Tuesday that some of U.S. President Donald Trump's rhetoric was unhelpful while she was trying to make progress in trade talks and said the bloc would have to respond if Washington imposed tariffs on EU cars. The EU is trying to avert a tariff war with the

  • Ending austerity could push UK tax to highest since 1940s - IFS
    News
    Reuters

    Ending austerity could push UK tax to highest since 1940s - IFS

    British taxes would need to rise to their highest since just after World War Two to sustainably meet Prime Minister Theresa May's goal of ending the austerity squeeze on public services, a think tank said ahead of her government's annual budget. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) said higher

  • Finance
    Reuters

    Greece's Energean expects to complete Tel Aviv listing on October 29

    Greek energy firm Energean said on Tuesday it plans to complete the process of a secondary listing on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange on Oct. 29. Energean, already listed in London, said its shares will be fully transferable and fungible between the two markets and that it will not be issuing any new shares