BBC reporter Ahmad Shah killed in Afghanistan attack

Security forces run from the site of a suicide attack after the second bombing in Kabul Afghanistan

Security forces run from the site of a suicide attack after the second bombing in Kabul Afghanistan

Pakistan on Monday strongly condemned the twin suicide attacks, killing and injuring scores of innocent people in the Afghan capital Kabul.

There was no indication of any direct link between the attacks.

General John Nicholson, the top U.S. and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation commander in Afghanistan, told Tolo TV last month that he expected the Taliban to carry out more suicide attacks this fighting season.

Islamic State and Taliban regularly carry out attacks in the Afghan capital although neither have claimed responsibility for these latest bombings at the time of reporting.

The first explosion was soon followed by another.

Following the attack, colleagues of the slain and wounded reporters posted images of their friends on social media.

Eight media persons including Shah Marai, chief photographer of the French news agency Agence France Presse (AFP) were killed.

Tributes from Afghan officials, analysts, and journalists were pouring in on Twitter. Conflicting casualty tolls are common in the immediate aftermath of big attacks. The group said it was targeting the intelligence headquarters. Unlike in past, when Kabul became a fortress by comparison to rest of country, terrorists of one and or sign have managed to convert Afghan capital to one of most risky places in Afghanistan for a couple of years.

Radio Free Europe said that two of their own and one incoming hire died in the blasts.

Survivors and witnesses recounted scenes of mayhem.

"When the explosion happened, everywhere was covered with dust and fire, it was such a horrific scene", said Jawed Ghulam Sakhi, a 28-year-old taxi driver.

"I was at the hospital where the dead bodies of at least four journalists were kept - a large group of journalists [gathered] there to mourn", said Sharifi.

Victims lie on the ground after the second blast in Kabul
BBC reporter Ahmad Shah killed in Afghanistan attack

Masouda, a young woman who was with her husband when he was wounded in the attack, lashed out at the authorities.

"We also send our condolences to the families of other journalists killed in this bad attack".

Another Afghan journalist, Anees Ur Rehman, said he was speechless.

"Today's bombing killed more journalists than any other single attack since the fall of the Taliban government in December 2001", the journalism watchdog Reporters Without Borders said. He has shown his press credentials and has mixed up with journalists before he exploded, "said Najib Danish, spokesman for Ministry of Interior, quoted by Reuters".

A few hours later, in the southern Kandahar province, a suicide vehicle bomb targeting a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation convoy killed 11 children from a nearby religious school, police said.

According to senior law enforcement officials, the blasts on Monday appeared to follow a pattern of double bombings meant to draw people to the site and inflict greater harm with a second blast. There was no claim of responsibility for the bloodbath in Kandahar, a former stronghold of the Taliban.

Hours later, 11 students of a madrassa were killed and 17 people, including five Romanian soldiers, were injured in a suicide attack aimed at a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation convoy in Kandahar province.

Meanwhile, on Monday, officials also said that 11 children were killed and 16 others injured in an attack launched by a separate suicide bomber, who is said to have driven a vehicle and attacked a foreign military convoy in the southern province of Kandahar. He said the slain officer was the chief of the criminal investigations unit for Behsud district.

"The stability of the region including Afghanistan hinges on the worldwide community's utmost efforts to strictly fight the problem of terrorism", Qassemi said on Monday.

The relentless assaults underscore the struggles that Afghan security forces have faced since the United States and North Atlantic Treaty Organisation concluded their combat mission at the end of 2014. Both groups want to establish strict Islamic rule in Afghanistan. Every morning as I go to the office and every evening when I return home, all I think of are cars that can be booby-trapped, or of suicide bombers coming out of a crowd.

The previous month, an ISIS bomber targeted a Shiite shrine in Kabul where people had gathered for the Persian New Year.

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