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June 23, 2021

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Blast in Afghanistan: Targeting Schoolgirls Kills at Least 58 People

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kabul update

An explosion outside a girls’ school in the Dasht-e-Barchi neighborhood of western Kabul on Saturday killed more than 50 people — all of them civilians, with most being young girls between the ages of 11 and 15.

The blast left more than 100 people injured. Afghan security officials would not comment on the cause of the blast and eyewitness accounts have so far been conflicting, with some suggesting a series of rocket attacks and others a car bomb. No one has claimed responsibility for the explosion,

but the Afghan government has pointed at the Taliban. The insurgents have denied involvement and condemned the attack.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid told reporters that only the “Islamic State” (IS) could be responsible for such a heinous crime.

More than 50 people – mostly girls – died in the explosions that occurred as students were leaving the building.

No-one has admitted carrying out the attack in Dasht-e-Barchi – an area often hit by Sunni Islamist militants.

Afghan government officials blamed Taliban militants for the attack, but the group denied any involvement.

The blasts hit the Sayed Shuhada school in the Dasht-e Barchi area of west Kabul, an area populated largely by the Shiite Hazara community. The area has suffered a string of deadly attacks in recent months.

No group claimed responsibility for the bombings. In the past, Islamic State’s regional affiliate, which considers Shiites to have rejected Islam, usually took credit for attacks targeting Shiite civilians. While the Taliban harshly oppressed the Hazaras when the movement ruled most of Afghanistan in the 1990s, the Taliban now say they tolerate the Shiite minority.

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