On Wednesday, a suicide bomb exploded in Kabul, killing at least 90 people and wounding more than 400 civilians.
The suicide bomb was detonated at 8:22 am near Zanbaq Square, a busy market and diplomatic area. The attack, which hit just days after the start of Ramadan, targeted civilians, killing many innocent women and children.
The attack has sparked an outcry from women activists condemning the violence. In a statement posted on Facebook, the Afghan Women’s Network said “With regret and huge pain, today once gain in our country innocent people at this holy month of Ramadan have seated down on the sorrow of their dearest due to today’s bloody tragedy in Kabul. Afghan Women’s Network seriously condemns and denounces this non-humanitarian and hateful action and demand once again from the security organs to consider security and protection of our country’s people.”
The Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission released a statement urging “the Afghan government, particularly the security forces and judiciary organs of the country to further endeavor to safeguard and protect the lives of the Afghan citizen and try to identify the perpetrators of such despicable acts and bring them to justice, and ensure payment of a fair compensation to the victims of such incidents.”
The explosion has left the affected area in a disarray of bodies and debris. Breaking reports indicate that violent protests have erupted on the location of the bombing, near Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s palace, leaving, even more, civilians dead.
While the Taliban has not claimed responsibility for the Kabul bombing, the Afghan intelligence agency and the National Directorate of Security are blaming the Haqqani wing of the organization. The attack is a reminder of the vulnerability of Afghan’s security situation, which has been steadily worsening since 2014.
The United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan’s (UNAMA) 2016 report shows an increase in conflict related civilian causalities. The report has found that conflict severely impacted Afghan children, with 923 deaths and 2,589 injuries, a 24 percent increase from 2015 and the highest child casualty rate UNAMA has ever recorded. The number of women killed or injured in conflict, 341 and 877 respectively, decreased by 2 percent from the previous year.
Media Resources: CNN 5/31/17; New York Times 5/31/17; AIHRC 5/31/17; BBC 6/2/17