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IED blast kills 3 including journalist

AT News

KABUL: An improvised explosive device blast in Kabul on Saturday killed at least three civilians including a veteran journalist amid escalating fighting across the country, an official said.

Blaming the Taliban for the bombing, Ferdous Faramarz, spokesman for Kabul police, said a magnetic bomb explosion hit a government-owned vehicle which was carrying three employees of the Central Bank, including Yama Siavash, a former anchor at TOLOnews.

But the Taliban have not claimed responsibility for the attack so far.

Sediq Sediqqi, spokesperson for the President, has condemned the “terrorist attack” on Yama Siavash, who had recently joined Afghanistan Central Bank.

Abdullah Abdullah, chairman of High Council for National Reconciliation, also condemned the attack and sent his condolences to the families of the victims.

The European Union in Afghanistan condemned the attacks and called for an end to targeted attacks against innocent civilians, including journalists and public officials. “Attempts to silence journalists must be countered,” said a statement.

The French embassy in Kabul also condemned the incident and said in a tweet the death of Siavash, a family face to Afghans, was yet another shock for the country. “No violence can silence the courageous young generation that fights for a free & democratic Afghanistan with a vibrant media, & for preserving the gains of the last 19 years,” the embassy tweeted.

Ross Wilson, Chargé d’Affaires to Afghanistan, said Saturday he was shocked at the killing of former TOLOnews anchor Yama Siawash and the others killed in today’s attack. We call for a stop to these violent attacks. Afghans need Peace,” he said.

Afghanistan has seen a deadly surge in violence in recent months which coincides with peace talks between the Afghan government and Taliban in Qatar in pursuit of a negotiated political settlement to the conflict.

Last week, gunmen stormed campus of Kabul University and started shooting after a suicide bomber detonated his explosives close to an entrance of Kabul University. After six hours of battle with Afghan security forces, 22 people, including students and a professor, were killed and dozens of others were badly wounded.

In less than three weeks, at least 60 civilians, including school students, have lost their lives in the capital Kabul. On October 24, as many as 24 students were killed after a suicide bomber detonated his explosives at the entrance gate of Kawsar-e-Danish tuition center in the western neighborhood of Kabul. Some wounded students, who were in critical health, died in hospitals from bleeding injuries.

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