The United Nations has strongly condemned the deadly attack near a university in Afghanistan’s capital Kabul that killed at least 33 people and injured 65 others as Afghans gathered to celebrate the Persian new year Nowruz. The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has underscored the need to hold perpetrators and financiers of these “reprehensible” acts accountable, a day after the IS-claimed attack targeted “a gathering of Shiites celebrating Nowruz.”
In a statement attributable to his spokesperson, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres offered his condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to those injured. “Nowruz is a time of renewal and celebration, and should be a time for promoting the values of peace and solidarity,” he said, reiterating that those organised the attack “must be brought to justice.”
The UN chief also expressed his solidarity with the government and the people of Afghanistan in the aftermath of the violence.
In a separate statement, Tadamichi Yamamoto, the head of the UN Mission, echoed the Secretary-General’s condemnation. “I reiterate that under no circumstances are such attacks justifiable, and I once again call on all parties to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law, at all times.”
In a press statement on the terrorist attack, members of the 15-nation Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the “heinous and cowardly” terrorist attack. “The members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security,” the press statement said.
The Council underlined the need to hold perpetrators, organisers, financiers and sponsors of the reprehensible acts of terrorism accountable and bring them to justice. The Council urged all nations to cooperate actively with the Afghan government and all other relevant authorities in this regard. “The members of the Security Council reiterated that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed,” the statement said.
Both the Taliban and ISIS carry out attacks in Kabul. The Taliban controls large swathes of Afghanistan and ISIS terrorists hold sway in a much smaller number of districts.