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October 26, 2020

Kabul bomber missed gate, but targeted young students in street

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October 26, 2020

KABUL: A recent respite from bombings was broken by an explosion near a tutoring center in western Kabul on Saturday, leaving at least 30 people dead, according to security sources.

Security agencies report that the attacker tried but failed to reach the entrance of the center, and he was recognized as he entered a narrow street that led to the gate of the institution. At the time, dozens of young students were in classes studying for the university entrance exam that is held every year in Afghanistan. According to security agencies, some students were out of their classes in the street and the attacker detonated his explosives near them when he was recognized by a security guard of the institution, who was also killed in the bombing.

At least 50 people, mostly students, were killed in a 2018 suicide bombing on Mawood Academy – a similar institution to the Kawsar-e-Danesh center that was attacked on Saturday evening. Eyewitnesses said the attacker was in military uniform.

Kawsar-e-Danish is well-known among tuition centers in Kabul. Over 5,000 students have been enrolled at the center. Shamsia, this year’s university exam top-scorer, studied at this center, according to students. Shamsia’s portrait is displayed on a wall along the street that leads to the center. Many notebooks, textbooks, pens and shoes stained with blood were left behind on the street of the education center that is surrounded by residential houses, which are made of earth.

“It happened when students were leaving their classes. He had a military uniform and a white scarf. I saw him from behind,” said Esmatullah, an eyewitness. “It was horrific. We call on our leaders to prevent these attacks,” said Mohammad Hashim, an eyewitness.