Hours after a massive truck bomb ripped through Kabul’s diplomatic quarter killing at least 80 and injuring hundreds, India strongly condemned the terrorist attack as ‘heinous’. In a statement to the media on Wednesday, the Ministry of External Affairs strongly deplored the heinous and reprehensible terrorist attack in Kabul. “Continuing violence even during the holy and pious month of Ramazan reflects the diabolical nature of the perpetrators and its supporters,” it said. The blast took place quite close to the Indian Embassy in Kabul.
“India is ready to render any assistance to Govt and people of Afghanistan and all possible support to bring perpetrators of the attack to justice,” added the statement.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who is in Spain today as part of a four-nation trip to Europe, condemned the attack on Twitter. “We strongly condemn the terrorist blast in Kabul. Our thoughts are with the families of the deceased & prayers with the injured,” he tweeted. He also reiterated India’s tough stand against terrorism. “India stands with Afghanistan in fighting all types of terrorism. Forces supporting terrorism need to be defeated,” he added.
The blast left behind a towering plume of smoke and bodies littered the site of the attack. Shards of glass from the windows of several missions and residences cold be seen on the ground even as people searched frantically for their loved ones. It was not clear what the target was, but what is known for certainty is that the attack brings to the fore the obvious spiralling insecurity in Aghanistan, where the military is dogged by soaring casualties and desertions as they try to beat back terrorists. Over a third of the country is outside government control.
Several hours after the explosion, ambulances crowded the scene as rescue workers pulled out bodies from the rubble. Health Ministry spokesperson Waheeb Majroh was quoted by AFP as saying: “Unfortunately the toll has reached 80 martyred (killed) and over 300 wounded, including many women and children,” adding the figures would continue to climb as more bodies are pulled from the debris.
No group took responsibility for the attack, with the Taliban tweeting they were not involved and strongly condemned the attack. The insurgent group rarely claims responsibility for attacks that kill large numbers of civilians. Several of the recent bombings in the past have been claimed by the Islamic State group, including a powerful blast targeting an armoured NATO convoy that killed at least eight people and wounded 28 on May 3.