Afghan Taliban blame foreign Islamic State fighter for Pakistan embassy attack

KABUL, Dec 5 (Reuters) - Afghanistan's Taliban said on Monday an Islamic State militant attack on Pakistan's embassy in Kabul was carried out with involvement of unidentified foreign groups with the intention of sowing distrust with Pakistan.

Islamic State, which fights the Taliban in Afghanistan, claimed responsibility for the Friday gun attack on the Pakistani embassy in a statement carried by one of its affiliated channels on the Telegram messaging service on Sunday.

A Pakistani security guard was wounded in the attack that Pakistan called an attempt to assassinate its head of mission, who was unhurt.

Pakistan has for decades had good relations with the Afghan Taliban but recently ties have been strained over security concerns on their common border.

The Taliban said they had arrested one suspect and recovered two guns and Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement the suspect was a foreign Islamic State member.

"Behind the attack there is the hand of some foreign groups and their aim is to create distrust between the two brotherly countries," Mujahid said.

He did not say which country the suspect was from. An investigation was continuing, he said.

The Islamic State affiliate in Afghanistan has claimed several high-profile attacks in Kabul in recent months, including a suicide blast outside the Russian embassy in September.

Pakistan said earlier it was consulting Afghan authorities to verify the report of an Islamic State claim of responsibility for the attack.

Pakistan said it had no plan to close the embassy and the head of the mission was in Pakistan for consultations.

Reporting by Mohammad Yunus Yawar and Charlotte Greenfield; Editing by Robert Birsel

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