Security

New Kabul bus bombing leaves 4 dead in Hazara neighbourhood

By Salaam Times and AFP

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A wounded man lies on a stretcher at the Wazir Akbar Khan Hospital in Kabul on May 1, 2020, after being injured in a car bombing in the Pul-e-Alam area in which at least 24 people were killed and nearly 110 wounded. [Wakil Kohsar/AFP]

KABUL -- At least four people were killed and four others injured Thursday (June 3) when a minibus was hit by an explosion in Kabul, police said, in the latest attack on commuters in the Afghan capital.

The blast was the fourth time that terrorists have targeted a bus in the past week.

Police spokesman Ferdows Faramorz said the explosion happened on a road in southwestern Kabul near a neighbourhood largely populated by the Shia Hazara community, which has been the frequent target of militant attacks.

No group has claimed responsibility.

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Afghan security personnel stand near a damaged bus carrying workers from a government watchdog agency that was targeted by a bomb blast in Kabul on June 3, 2019. [STR/AFP]

Earlier this week, the Afghan affiliate of the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) claimed back-to-back attacks on two buses in western Kabul that killed at least 10 people on Tuesday evening.

Faramorz said at least 10 others had been wounded 10 more, Reuters reported, and announced that police launched an investigation.

On Friday, four people, including two university lecturers, were killed and 11 were wounded when a roadside bomb struck their bus north of Kabul.

The incident occurred when the bus they were riding was hit by an explosive planted on the road in the Parwan provincial capital of Charikar, north of Kabul, Interior Affairs Ministry spokesman Tariq Arian said.

At least two of the dead were lecturers at Al-Beroni University in Kapisa province, said the Higher Education Ministry.

The dean of the university and some students were among the wounded.

Abdullah Abdullah, who heads the country's peace process, condemned the incident, which no group has yet claimed, describing it as a "terrorist attack".

'Inhumane and against Islamic values'

Former President Hamid Karzai strongly condemned the back-to-back Tuesday bus attacks, describing them as inhumane and against Islamic values, the Afghan Times reported Wednesday.

He called on the warring sides to immediately resume peace negotiations and end the bloodshed in the country, and offered his condolences to the families of the victims.

Violence has soared in recent weeks as Afghan forces and the Taliban clash in near-daily battles across the rugged countryside, with the militants appearing to focus on battering checkpoints and bases near Kabul.

The surge in violence comes as the US military continues to withdraw its remaining 2,500 troops from Afghanistan.

Some fear Afghanistan will remain home to a number of extremist groups.

In a report published Wednesday, the United Nations Security Council warned that ISIS continues "to pose a threat to both the country and the wider region", saying the group had approximately 2,000 fighters inside Afghanistan.

But Afghan forces continue to fight back against extremist groups and say they remain committed to doing so.

On Tuesday, the Afghan National Army said it had killed six members of al-Qaeda and eight Taliban militants in an air strike in Nawa district, Helmand province, according to the Afghan Times.

Afghan National Defence and Security Forces (ANDSF) have killed at least 30 al-Qaeda members in recent weeks as part of a response to a surge in Taliban attacks on the Helmand provincial capital of Lashkargah.

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The first strategic, ethical and responsible step in dealing with this situation is the need to acknowledge the genocide of Hazaras. Over the last few years, the Afghan government has tried to attribute the number of targeted attacks on this ethnic group to war crimes and crimes against humanity. The absolute majority of civilian casualties that have been caused by the attacks of both warring sides in Afghanistan are war crimes and crimes against humanity, but the attacks that targeted Hazaras over the last few years are worse than war crimes and crimes against humanity, and they are clear and undeniable proofs of genocide. One of the most important reasons for the refusal of the Afghan government to consider these attacks as the genocide of Hazaras is the effort that the Afghan government and government officials make to escape from legal, political and security issues.

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There is no doubt that all ethnic groups in Afghanistan inclduing Hazaras, Pashtuns, Tajiks, Uzbeks have been harmed ... but also we cannot ignore the fact that no old, young, or even a newborn person of other ethnic group has been attacked and shot for their ethnicity as Hazaras were attacked and killed for being Hazara.

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The ignorant and narrow-minded groups want to prevent Hazaras from getting education and progress by carrying out barbaric attacks and undermine the beliefs of Hazara people to a bright future sometimes under the name of Taliban and sometimes under the name of ISIS.

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Unfortunately, targeted killings have been part of the omitting (discriminating) policy. This policy has been implemented in various fields with different approaches and tools. There is a meaningful relationship between the genocide of Hazaras and the systematic discrimination against this society. The perpetrators of killing and discrimination think about omitting. To stop these killings, discrimination against Hazaras must end. There is no doubt that all ethnic groups of the country are the victims of this destructive war, and talking about a particular ethnicity as victim does not mean that the pains and losses of other ethnic groups are underestimated. However, considering that the enemies of this country don’t recognize any boundaries, we must not underestimate the risk of the most heinous crimes against humanity, including the genocide that is committed against a particular ethnicity.

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Who furthers the policy of omitting? Hazaras have as much power in the current government and government system as they never had in the history; however, they themselves are not good. It is right that killing of innocent people especially children is a barbaric act, but the real perpetrators of these acts are leaders of Hazaras including Mohammad Mohaqiq, Karim Khalili and others who act on behalf of Iran. Did you forget Mohaqiq who supported sending Hazara militants in the ranks of Fatemyoun to Syria and Iraq? Hazaras' leaders are spies of Iran, they get money from Iran and in exchange they send Hazara youth as mercenaries of Iran to the fighting where they are killed in their fighting against other militant groups in Syria and Iraq. And when you kill someone, will he give you flowers back? they will certainly take revenge. When it comes to genocide, no one is safe in Afghanistan. Did you forget as the same ISIS killed thousands of Pashtuns in Shinwari district of Nangarhar? they killed hundreds and thousands of others in Khogiani district either. Instead of telling lies and propagating against other ethnic groups, you may better ask your leaders to stop sending your youth in favor of Iran to Iran's proxy wars. Iran and Pakistan are the worst enemies of Afghans and Afghanistan.

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