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Death toll soars to 50 in Kabul girl’s school bloodbath

“Violence in or around schools is never acceptable. Schools must be havens of peace where children can play, learn and socialize safely. Children must never be the target of violence,” children advocacy agency said.  

AT News

KABUL: A massive car bombing followed with two back-to-back IED blasts near a girl’s school in western part of Kabul city have claimed the lives of over 50 people, most of them young pupils below 16 years old. The bloody incident also injured 100 others – again most of them are school students, some of them with critical health conditions.  

The horrific attack targeted schoolgirls of Sayed Al-Shuhada School located in Dasht-e-Barchi area in PD13. The incident happened at around 4:27pm local time on Saturday, when the students were leaving the school.

Ambulances have quickly evacuated the wounded as relatives and residents screamed at the scene of terrible bombing. The Interior Ministry Spokesman, Tariq Arian said the shocking incident involved a car bombing and two mine blasts.

“At least 50 people, most of them pupil’s, had embraced martyrdom, and over 100 others received injuries,” he added.

He blamed the Taliban for carrying such an inhumane attack. “The group often targets schools, academic institutions and the holy places,” Mr. Arian added. He also talked of a lunching thorough investigation of the incident to find the culprits.

However, the Taliban condemned the attack, and denied any responsibility.

The incident poured condemnations from Afghan leaders and foreign diplomats and embassies in Kabul.

The Taliban has intensified illicit war and violence, President Ghani said, referring to the girl’s school bombing.

“It once again revealed that the group has no intention to resolve the current crisis through a peaceful way, rather complicating the situation, sabotaging opportunity for peace,” President Ghani quoted as saying in a statement issued by his office.

“This act of Taliban is a crime against humanity and in contrast with the Islamic values,” the statement mentioned.

The Taliban have lost capability to fight the Afghan security forces directly, President Ghani said, adding the group now turned face to public targets, including girl’s school.

Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation Dr. Abdullah Abdullah in his twitter said “I condemn today’s (Saturday) unconscionable terrorist attack and join our devastated nation in expressing our deepest sympathies to the bereaved families of students and victims whose lives were cut short in the Barchi region. The perpetrators need to be identified and brought to justice.”  

A statement issued by the UN said that the Secretary-General Antonio Guterres strongly condemns the horrific attack near a school in Kabul, which killed and injured scores of civilians, including many girls.

Mr. Guterres expressed his deepest sympathies to the families of the victims and to the government and people of Afghanistan and wished a speedy recovery to those injured. “Those responsible for this heinous crime must be held accountable.”

The Secretary-General underlines the urgency of ending the violence in Afghanistan and achieving a peaceful settlement of the conflict.

Moreover, US Chargé d’Affaires Ross Wilson in Kabul said, “this terrorist attack on a Kabul girls’ school is abhorrent. With scores murdered, this unforgivable attack on children is an assault on Afghanistan’s future, which cannot stand. My deepest condolences to the students and families who have suffered.”

Chinese Ambassador to Afghanistan, Mr. Wang Yu tweeted: “We condemn the heinous attack in Kabul today (Saturday), which killed girl students and other civilians. We can’t bear to see such tragic photos. We call for an end to violence, and Afghan people enjoy peaceful life.”

0“It is inconceivable that anyone could consider students at school as a legitimate target, we call for an immediate end to this violence before any more innocent children lose their lives,” the UK Embassy in Afghanistan said in a statement.

UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore has strongly condemned the horrific attack near the Sayed Ul-Shuhada high school, in Kabul, Afghanistan. The attack claimed the lives of dozens of schoolchildren, mostly girls, and severely injured many more. “Violence in or around schools is never acceptable. Schools must be havens of peace where children can play, learn and socialize safely,” he said.

He furthered: “Children must never be the target of violence. UNICEF continues to call on all parties to the conflict to adhere to international human rights and humanitarian law and ensure the safety and protection of all children.”

The bombing has apparently aimed to cause maximum civilian carnage that has unleashed fear that violence could go high around Afghanistan in the wake of U.S. and NATO troops withdrawal after 20 years of military engagement.

No terrorist group, including the Daesh extremis group, who were involved in deadly attacks against an education center in the same area last year that killed at least 50 people, claimed responsibility for the attack.

Violence has been gripping Afghanistan from all directions as the remaining 2,500 to 3,500 US troops officially began leaving the country and the Afghan security forces have already taken control of some bases. 

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