On the last day of May, a massive explosion ripped through the diplomatic quarter of Kabul, killing 90 and injuring more than 460.
The deadly blast, which was the result of a bomb hidden in a sewage tanker, occurred near the German embassy in the Wazir Akbar Khan area of the capital on Wednesday morning. The area is one of the city’s most secure, due to the high concentration of foreign embassies in the quarter. The streets were extremely busy with commuters when the bomb exploded, as it was the morning rush hour.
The injured included employees from the German and French embassies, as well as 11 contractors for the American embassy. Eleven Afghan national policemen and eight soldiers from the Afghan national army were killed, along with an Afghan security guard employed by the German embassy. The BBC reported that one of its Afghan drivers, Mohammed Nazir, a father in his thirties, was also among the dead.
While the government buildings are secured by high walls, the street where the bomb exploded can be accessed by civilians, meaning the main victims of this attack were regular Afghans.
Witnesses have described how buildings hundreds of metres from the blast were damaged, with windows blown out and doors ripped from their hinges. Najib Danish, deputy spokesman for the Afghan interior ministry, said the bomb was strong enough to destroy or damage 30 vehicles in the vicinity of the blast.
The attack is the deadliest in Kabul since an Isis suicide bomber killed 100 at a protest last summer. While initial reports linked the recent attack to the Taliban, the group has denied any responsibility.
The tragedy is only compounded by the fact it took place so soon after the start of Ramadan. We can only echo the words President Ashraf Ghani when he said: ‘The terrorists, even in the holy month of Ramadan, the month of goodness, blessing and prayer, are not stopping the killing of our innocent people.’
We must all condemn this horrific atrocity. The terrorists’ decision to commit such an evil attack during Ramadan only reaffirms how they share no values with Afghans, the diaspora, nor Muslims the world over.
Featured image credit: Aditya Raj Kaul, Twitter