UNAMA condemns killing of civilians in Gardez mosque attack
KABUL - The UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) condemns today’s suicide attack that took place at a mosque in Gardez, killing at least 23 civilians and injuring at least 74 others.
During Friday prayers, two suicide attackers detonated their explosive vests inside the Shia mosque. As there were civilian houses near the mosque, women and children were among the scores of civilian casualties.
“This attack targeting civilians has no possible justification,” said Tadamichi Yamamoto, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA. “Those who are responsible for enabling this attack must be brought to justice and held to account.”
The attack today is the latest in a pattern of attacks against mosques, particularly Shia religious sites. International humanitarian law prohibits deliberate attacks against civilians and civilian property, including places of worship, and also places a specific obligation on parties to enable religious personnel to carry out their work.
“These brutal and senseless attacks against people at prayer are atrocities,” said Yamamoto. “Such attacks directed against congregations and places of worship are serious violations of international law that may amount to war crimes.”
UNAMA expresses its condolences to the loved ones of those killed in the attack and wishes a full and speedy recovery to those injured.