There have been dozens of blasts and attacks targeting civilians since the Taliban returned to power in August last year, most claimed by the local chapter of Daesh.

It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast.
It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast. (AP Archive)

At least 16 people have been killed and 24 others wounded by a blast at a school in Afghanistan's northern city of Aybak, a doctor at a local hospital said.

A doctor in Aybak, about 200 kilometres (130 miles) north of the capital Kabul, said on Wednesday the casualties were mostly youngsters.

"All of them are children and ordinary people," he told AFP, asking not to be named.

A provincial official confirmed the blast, but could not provide casualty figures. 

Emdadullah Muhajir, spokesperson for Samangan's provincial government added said, "A blast took place around 12:45 pm inside Jahdia Madrassa in the centre of the city. Lots of boys are studying at t his madrassa (religious school."

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Unforgivable crime

It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast. Muhajir said an investigation had begun.

Interior ministry spokesperson Abdul Nafi Takor confirmed the blast but put the death toll so far at 10 with more injured.

"Our detective and security forces are working to identify the perpetrators of this unforgivable crime and bring them to justice," Takor said.

The Taliban say they are focused on securing the war-torn nation since taking over the country last year, however several attacks, including at mosques, have taken place in recent months, some of which have been claimed by Daesh. 

READ MORE: Taliban strike back against Daesh terrorists

Source: TRTWorld and agencies