Gunmen stormed a maternity hospital in the western part of the Afghan capital Kabul
Affected Countries: afghanistan;
Gunmen stormed a maternity hospital in the western part of the Afghan capital on Tuesday, setting off a gun battle with police, officials said. Afghan forces carried out newborn babies and their mothers as they evacuated the hospital; at least four people were reported wounded.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack but both the Taliban and the Islamic State group are active in Kabul and its surroundings, and both frequently target the military and security forces, as well as civilians.
Black smoke rose into the sky over the hospital in Kabul’s Dashti Barchi, a mostly Shiite neighborhood that has been the site of past attacks by Islamic State militants.
Interior Ministry spokesman Tareq Arian said that over 80 women and babies were evacuated by Afghan security forces as the firefight got underway. Photos shared by the ministry show newborn babies and their mothers being carried out of the hospital.
“The forces are trying to eliminate the terrorists and bring the situation under control,” said Arian. He later added that at least one of the attackers was shot dead.
Wahid Majroh, deputy public health minister, rushed to the site from where he said at least four people were wounded. It was unclear why the hospital in Dashti Barchi, a 100-bed facility that provides health services to the area, was targeted.
Meanwhile in eastern Nangarhar province, officials said a suicide bomber targeted a funeral ceremony in Khewa district. There were no confirmed figures but there are fears of a high casualty toll, said Attahullah Khogyani, spokesman for the provincial governor.
Mourners had gathered for the funeral of a local militia commander who died of a heart attack on Monday night when the bomber struck “among the crowd, killing and wounding many,” he added.
The IS, meanwhile, claimed it was behind a spate of attacks on Monday in Kabul when four bombs, one placed under a garbage bin and the other three by the roadside, went off in the northern part of the city, wounding four civilians, including a child.
The Afghan intelligence service said in a statement later Monday that the agency has arrested an IS leader in the region, Zia-ul Haq, also known as Shaikh Abu Omer Al-Khorasani.
Source: The Telegraph