1 of 2Foto: ZOHRA BENSEMRA / X90036
Two powerful explosions occurred in a military hospital in Kabul. At least 19 people were killed and more than 50 were wounded. The Taliban sent special forces to repel the attack.
Eyewitnesses told several news agencies of an explosion followed by an exchange of fire in the area of Sardar Muhammad Daoud Khan Military Hospital in Kabul. Shortly after the first explosion, an AFP reporter heard another explosion, according to NTB.
At least 19 people have been killed and more than 50 injured, according to health officials.
– I’m in the hospital and I heard a loud explosion from the first barrier. He asks us to go to the safe rooms. I also hear shootings, a doctor at the hospital tells AFP.
It was not immediately known whether there were any injuries or the cause of the explosion.
– It is said that the suicide bombing took place in front of Sardar Dawood Khan Hospital. Sources at the scene say that gunshots were also heard after the explosion, Miraka Bhopal, director of Tolo News Channel, wrote on Twitter.
1 of 2Photo: VICE KOHSAR / AFP
The Taliban confirm this
Interior Ministry spokesman Qari Saeed Khosti confirmed the incident on Twitter and reported that the group had sent soldiers to the hospital:
A bomb exploded at the entrance to a 400-bed hospital in the 10th district of Kabul. Special forces from the Islamic Emirate arrived in the area. The explosion caused deaths, details of which will be published later, The Taliban spokesperson writes.
The hospital is located near the city center, not far from several Western embassies, including the former Norwegian one.
1 of 3Photo: STRINGER/EPA
According to the Taliban, among the dead were several civilians, but the hospital itself is surrounded by a large wall, and at the entrance is a military checkpoint controlled by the Taliban.
At 12.40 NST, the Afghanistan Committee, which has local staff near the hospital, informed VG that fighting was still going on inside the hospital walls.
Afghan journalist Bilal Sarwari wrote on Twitter that the nurse he spoke to says the attackers stormed:
– The nurse said that the attackers shot everyone they saw.
– Two explosions occurred, the first, then the other about an hour later. We don’t have an overview of the number of wounded or dead, says Norwegian Terje Waterdahl of the Afghanistan Committee to VG by phone from Kabul.
Waterdale says the Afghan committee has health staff working at another hospital nearby, but they are safe.
– Our close people say that the attack started inside the hospital walls, and the shooting continued at the site. Waterdale explains that this is a trauma hospital intended primarily for military patients, but also for some civilians.
1 of 2Photo: WANA NEWS AGENCY / X07016
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He continued, “We do not know who is behind it, but it is clear that such an attack is aimed at weakening the Taliban, by showing that they have no control over security in Kabul.”
No one has claimed responsibility for the attack.
The hospital is being used by the Taliban, which may indicate that the terrorist group ISIS-Khorasan (ISK) is behind it. The two extremist groups, the Taliban and ISK, are in an ever-increasing struggle for power in Afghanistan.
The Taliban have promised fierce justice, but they claim it is not as brutal as it once was. Recently, VG joined them on a desert patrol to see it. Read the inside report: This is Afghanistan Taliban.
– We hear that ISK is trying to recruit from among the soldiers of the former government, who are in great financial distress. The conflict between the Taliban and ISK could become more intense.
TalibanOk power in Kabul mid-August After controlling most of the country in the previous months. Since then, the Taliban and many mosques have been subjected to a series of attacks by the more radical Islamic State.
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