33 killed and dozens wounded at Kabul education centre
A suicide bomber targeted an education centre in a Shiite area of Kabul Friday, killing at least 33 students and wounding 36 others, but there was no immediate claim of responsibility for the blast.
Table of Contents (Show / Hide)
At least 33 young students belonging to Shia Hazara community of Afghanistan were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up at a Girls’ tuition center in the center of capital Kabul in the morning on Friday.
However, independent media persons quoted tuition center authorities to claim that at least 100 people died in the attack.
The explosion hit Kaj Education Centre in Dasht-e-Barchi, located in a predominantly Hazara neighborhood -- an ethnic minority group that has long faced oppression and discrimination.
Students were writing a mock university entrance test at around 7:30 a.m. when the blast took place, Kabul Police Spokesman Khalid Zadran told the media persons.
Eyewitnesses said the bomber had entered the classroom from the door that was meant for girl students in the segregated classrooms.
The authorities at the Ali Jinah Hospital where the injured were rushed told CNN that so far 33 people had died and 36 were injured.
No organization has so far claimed the responsibility of the blast.
Kabul's security department's spokesman Khalid Zadran said that students came to the center for the university entrance exam, the number of casualties is preliminary and may increase.
However, a Canada-based Afghan journalist Bilal Sarwary claimed 100 students had died in the blast.
The blast has been condemned by the United States, Norway, Iran, Afghan political leaders and foreign diplomatic missions.
The Islamic Emirate's spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid in a tweet condemned the attack and called it "great horror."
Former chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR), Abdullah Abdullah, condemned the attack, saying those responsible for the blast are the enemies of peace and development in the country.
The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) tweeted it "condemns the outrage, extending its deep condolences to all those in mourning."
UNICEF tweeted, “Violence in or around education establishments is never acceptable. Such places must be havens of peace where children can learn, be with friends, and feel safe as they build skills for their futures. Children and adolescents are not, and must never be, the target of violence.”
The U.S. Charge d’Affaires Karen Decker said on Twitter: “The U.S. strongly condemns today’s attack on the Kaaj Higher Educational Center. Targeting a room full of students taking exams is shameful; all students should be able to pursue an education in peace & without fear.”
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kan’ani said the deadly attack on “innocent youth who had participated in a scientific test is a barbaric action and is against religious teachings and basic human principles.”
The attack, which was has not been claimed by any side so far, is the latest in a continuous stream of violence since the Taliban seized power in Afghanistan just over a year ago.
On September 23, at least seven people were killed and 41 others injured in a blast in the capital city, just weeks after a series of bombings in the war-torn country.
The explosion happened near a mosque in Wazir Akbar Khan district in central Kabul as people were streaming out from Friday prayers.
The blast came on the heels of another deadly explosion in a mosque in the northern city of Kunduz weeks ago, which killed at least 33 Afghan people, including children, and wounded 43 others.
Also, in another blast outside a mosque in Afghanistan in early September, a high-profile pro-Taliban cleric and 17 other civilians were killed.
The Taliban, who had previously ruled the country from 1996 to 2001, took power again on August 15 last year amid a chaotic US troop withdrawal from the war-torn country.
Since then, the country has been the scene of recurrent attacks, some of which have been claimed by the Daesh terrorist group.
News ID : 1298