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May 10, 2021

Victims of Kabul school bombing, all teenagers, laid to rest

 
May 10, 2021

KABUL: Over 60 victims of the school bombing—most of whom were students and younger than 18 years old— were buried on a hill in the west of Kabul on Sunday, a day after the deadly attack.

Their families said that most of the victims were teenage girls who studied at Sayed-ul-Shuhada High School in the Dasht-e-Barchi area in Kabul’s District 13. These girls, their families said, were faced with many hardships but were eager to pursue their studies and make a brighter future for themselves.

The mourning families said the government has ignored the people and has failed to ensure their safety. They say they have lost hope in the government. Many parents collected bloodstained notebooks, books, bags, and pens belonging to their slain daughters who would no longer need them.

“Only this has remained from her. Nothing more is in this notebook, except some English words,” said Shir Hazara, a relative of a victim. “This notebook has been stained with the martyr who owned it.” Atifa, 13, who lost her life in the attack, was interested in becoming an architect to change her family’s life for the better.

“We searched until 11 pm at night but we could not find her. We found her at 12 am at Ali Jinnah Hospital,” said Atifa’s father Mohammad Nasir who is a painter. “They should refrain from such acts. This is inhumane,” said Mohammad Hakim, Atifa’s uncle.

Gulsoom, another victim, wanted to become a teacher. “I recognized her from her bag that was near the school. Her books were inside it,” said Ehsanullah, Gulsoom’s father.

“When she (Gulsoom) was going to school yesterday, my mother asked her not to go because she had some work to do, but she told my mother that she will go today and she will not go the day after,” Gulsoom’s brother said. All those who were laid to rest on the hill were between 13 and 18 years old, according to their parents. They all were daughters of parents who worked as laborers.

“We buried 26 martyrs on this hill that has been named the Hill of Education. We buried 20 more martyrs on another hill and 17 more were buried in Chehel Dokhtaran Hill near the school,” said Mohammad Daud, the relative of a victim. It is not the first time that the west of Kabul has had an attack on an education center. Last year, a tuition center was targeted by a suicide bomber in which dozens of students were killed.