The death toll among the explosion carried out by suicide bombers that assaulted a Shiite mosque in southern Afghanistan, packed with worshippers attending weekly Friday prayers raised to 37 and 70 injuries, according to hospital officials and an eyewitness.
The attack on the Imam Barga mosque comes a week after a bombing at a Shiite mosque in northern Afghanistan claimed by a local Islamic State branch killed 46 people.
Four suicide bombers struck the mosque, according to Murtaza, an eyewitness who, like many Afghans, goes by one name. Two of the bombers detonated their devices at a security gate, allowing the other two to rush inside and attack the worshippers.
He told The Associated Press over the phone that Friday prayers usually draw roughly 500 people.
Survivors were seen stumbling around in a trance or crying out in agony on video footage from the site, with victims spread across blood-stained carpets.
On the condition of anonymity, a local hospital official who was not allowed to brief the media verified the death toll.
Shiite Muslims are considered apostates by the hardline group, which is opposed to the ruling Taliban. Since the Taliban seized power in August amid the withdrawal of US forces, IS has claimed responsibility for a number of devastating bombs around the nation. In lesser operations, the organization has also attacked Taliban fighters.
Bilal Karimi, a Taliban spokesman, confirmed the blast and said an inquiry was underway but gave no other details.