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Eight killed in blast near Kabul University

July 20, 2019


KABUL: Security personnel inspecting the site of the deadly blast on Friday.—AFP
KABUL: Security personnel inspecting the site of the deadly blast on Friday.—AFP

KABUL: At least eight people were killed and dozens more wounded on Friday when a bomb detonated near a major university in Kabul while students were waiting to take an examination, officials said.

The blast comes amid an unending wave of violence across Afghanistan, where civilians are being killed every day in the country’s gruelling conflict, now in its 18th year.

The Taliban denied any involvement in Friday’s blast, which took place near the southern entrance to Kabul University, an official with the interior ministry’s media office said.

Health ministry spokesman Wahidullah Mayar said the death toll had reached eight, with another 33 injured.

“Wounded patients have been receiving the required medical and surgical treatment,” he said on Twitter.

The heavily militarised Afghan capital remains one of the highest-profile targets for both the Taliban and the so-called Islamic State (IS) group, with both regularly launching devastating attacks that kill and maim civilians.

Bahar Mehr, the interior ministry official, said five people had been killed, including a traffic police officer. “The wounded were law students gathered for (an examination). We do not know how many students had gathered there,” he said.

The blast had been caused by a ‘sticky bomb’, he said, a common threat in Kabul where criminals and militants often slap explosives under vehicles.

Local media reports said police had been pursuing the vehicle when it detonated.

“The university and the examination... were not the target of the attack, and we are investigating,” Firdaws Faramarz, Kabul police spokesman, told TV network TOLO.

Published in Dawn, July 20th, 2019