(CNN) – A suicide bombing at an training middle in Kabul has killed not less than 23 folks, most of them believed to be younger ladies, within the newest signal of a worsening safety scenario within the Afghan capital.
The explosion befell on Friday on the Kaaj Schooling Middle, in a neighborhood predominantly populated by Hazaras – an ethnic minority group that has lengthy confronted oppression.
The scholars have been taking an entrance examination on the college at 7:30 a.m. native time (11 p.m. ET) when the explosion first occurred, Kabul police spokesman Khalid Zadran advised CNN.
Abdu Ghayas Momand, a physician at Ali Jinah Hospital, the place a number of the victims have been taken, mentioned 23 folks have been killed and 36 injured.
There was no declare of accountability for the assault.
Taiba Mehtarkhil, an eyewitness, advised CNN that most of the victims have been younger ladies. She went to the middle to search for her pal after listening to information of the assault and was confronted with scenes of chaos and despair, she mentioned.
“I noticed mother and father, different members of the family of Kaaj college students, screaming and operating up and down,” she mentioned. “Some have been making an attempt to supply emergency medical help to their family members, and a few have been in search of their little children. I noticed with my very own eyes about 20 killed and lots of extra wounded.”
Mehtarkhila’s pal survived the assault as a result of she was operating late and had not reached the classroom when the blast occurred, she mentioned.
One other eyewitness, a 20-year-old lady who didn’t need to be named for safety causes, advised CNN that she was about 20 steps from the gate when the explosion knocked her to the bottom.
“After I went inside, I noticed a lot of my classmates coated in blood. I discovered that the explosion occurred in my classroom,” she mentioned by way of tears.
“I used to be in a state of shock. I used to be simply screaming my pals names and in search of them. “I discovered a few of them alive, however not my closest pal who was 19 years outdated and essentially the most clever woman in our class,” she mentioned.
Her classroom is the most important within the middle and usually holds about 500 college students, she mentioned.
“It is horrible, I am nonetheless in shock, it looks like a nightmare. It killed a lot of my dearest pals and classmates. I would like the world to not deal with this as one other piece of reports. I would like the world to know the ache we’re going by way of proper now. I’m utterly devastated,” she mentioned.
Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid condemned the assault in a tweet on Friday.
The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan calls the assault on the Qay coaching middle within the thirteenth district of Kabul a serious crime, strongly condemns it and expresses its deepest condolences to the households of the victims of this incident.
“Critical measures will likely be taken to search out and punish the perpetrators,” he added.
UNICEF introduced that it was “appalled by the horrible assault” by the U tweet Friday.
“This heinous act claimed the lives of dozens of adolescent ladies and boys and left them severely injured,” it mentioned. “Violence in or round instructional establishments is rarely acceptable. Such locations should be havens of peace the place kids can study, be with pals and really feel secure whereas constructing abilities for his or her future.”
The US mentioned it “strongly condemns the assault” in an announcement on Twitter.
“It is embarrassing to focus on a room full of scholars taking exams; all college students ought to be capable to proceed their training in peace and with out concern,” the cost d’affaires of the US mission in Afghanistan wrote.
Pakistani Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif condemned the assault, tweeting: “Deeply saddened by the lack of younger lives in a horrific suicide assault on a studying middle in Kabul. Phrases can not categorical this sheer barbarism. We ship our deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to the bereaved households and the folks of Afghanistan.”
The UN particular rapporteur for human rights in Afghanistan, Richard Bennett, additionally condemned the bombing.
“I condemn at the moment’s horrific assault on college students at Kaaj Academy,” Bennett tweeted with the hashtag #studentnotargets. “The assault on Hazara and Shia training should cease. Cease the assaults on the way forward for Afghanistan, cease worldwide crimes.
Bennett mentioned the middle was filled with college students “stuffed with hope for a brighter future.”
“Afghanistan’s future will depend on stopping worldwide crimes, holding the perpetrators accountable and educating the youth,” he added.
For the reason that Taliban took management of Afghanistan in August 2021, there have been a number of assaults on the Hazara group.
The Islamic State of Khorasan Province has claimed accountability for 13 assaults on Hazaras and is linked to 3 others which have killed and injured not less than 700 folks, in keeping with Human Rights Watch.
“Taliban authorities have carried out little to guard these communities from suicide bombings and different illegal assaults or to supply needed medical care and different help to victims and their households,” the report added.
A sequence of assaults in Kabul have claimed dozens of lives in current weeks.
Earlier this month, two Russian embassy staff have been amongst six folks killed in a suicide bombing close to the Russian embassy, and in August, an explosion at a mosque throughout night prayers killed 21 folks and injured 33 others.
That is breaking information. Extra to come back.
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