Kabul Blast Death Toll Rises to 103; US, India Condemn Attack

Although Taliban claimed responsibility for the blast, the Afghan government laid the blame on the Haqqani Network.

2 min read
Kabul  Blast Death Toll Rises to 103; US, India Condemn  Attack

A bomb, hidden in an ambulance, killed and wounded scores of people at a police checkpoint in the Afghan capital Kabul on Saturday, 27 January, in an area near foreign embassies and government buildings.

The spokesperson of the Ministry of Public Health in Afghanistan confirmed that the death toll from the blast rose to 103, with around 235 wounded.

The blast came a week after a deadly attack on the Intercontinental Hotel in the city. Although the Taliban group claimed responsibility for the attack, according to Iran’s Press TV, the Afghan government said that the Haqqani Network was responsible for the blast.

India Deplores Attack, Says “There Can be no Justification”

In a press release, India condemned the attacked and said there could no “justification for such reprehensible attacks.”

Read the full text of the press release below:

Kabul  Blast Death Toll Rises to 103; US, India Condemn  Attack

President Ramnath Kovind also expressed his shock at the news of the attack and said, “India stands shoulder-to-shoulder with the people and government of Afghanistan in the fight against the forces of terror and evil.”

Member of parliament Mirwais Yasini, who was in the area when the explosion occurred, said the ambulance approached the checkpoint, close to an office of the High Peace Council and several foreign embassies, and blew up. He said he saw a number of people lying on the ground.

A plume of grey smoke rose from the blast area in the city centre, while buildings hundreds of metres away were shaken by the force of the explosion.

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“We Will Not Allow The Taliban to Win”: Trump Condemns Attack

US President Donald Trump also condemned the attack. “All countries should take decisive action against the Taliban, which has claimed responsibility for Saturday's attack,” Trump said.

According to a report in AP, Trump said the "murderous attack" renewed US’ resolve with its Afghan partners. "The Taliban's cruelty will not prevail," he said, adding that the US is "committed to a secure Afghanistan that is free from terrorists."

In a tweet, Trump also said, “We will not allow the Taliban to win!”


UNSC Decries Attack, Eiffel Tower to go Dark in Solidarity

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has strongly condemned the attack. In the statement released in Addis Ababa, where the UN chief is attending an African Union summit, he said:

Indiscriminate attacks against civilians are grave violations of human rights and international humanitarian law, and can never be justified. Those responsible for today’s attack must be brought to justice.

France's "Iron Lady," the Eiffel Tower, will turn off its lights in solidarity with the victims of Afghan capital Kabul's attack, the Paris Mayor said.

(This is a developing story and will be updated)

(With inputs from AP & IANS)

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