Three Women Working to Vaccinate Children Shot Dead in Afghanistan

KABUL, Afghanistan – Three health workers, all women, working for the government’s polio vaccine campaign, were shot and killed on Tuesday in Jalalabad, eastern Afghanistan, local officials said, working in television in only one city The three women who had been killed were killed.

All women, in their 20s, were going about their jobs in a city bordering with Pakistan when they were shot in two separate attacks.

According to the governor’s office, Semi 24, and Basira, 20, who like many Afghans, both known by only one name, were shot and killed by two gunmen as they barged into a house in Jalalabad went.

Both were going door-to-door in the city, with Taliban banned in the past in areas under their control.

This was the first vaccination campaign of the seminar; Said the victim’s cousin Ahmed Faisal Nizami. She was recently married and graduated from a teacher training college.

An observer for the polio vaccine campaign that began in Afghanistan on Monday, 24-year-old Negina was shot and killed elsewhere in the city.

Neither group immediately claimed responsibility for the killings.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid dismissed any involvement in the incident in a WhatsApp message.

Afghanistan, which recorded 56 cases of polio in 2020, according to Global Polio Eradication Initiative, One of the two countries where the disease has not been eradicated, is behind Pakistan.

During Tuesday’s shooting, there was an explosion at the city’s regional hospital, officials said, in front of the campus where vaccines accumulate. There were no casualties, but the windows were shattered.

The latest killings – part of a wave of targeted assassinations often ejecting women, journalists, professionals, activists and doctors – occurred in a frightening moment for Afghanistan as the Taliban have consistently made military gains, and as collaborating with Afghanistan Attacked continuously. Government. Additionally, the remnants of the Islamic State operating in the region have focused on less large-scale bombings and more small but targeted attacks.

Meanwhile, the United States It is yet to be definitively stated whether it will meet the May 1 deadline to withdraw all US forces, Per agreement the Trump administration signed with the Taliban in February 2020.

“My niece Basira was a poor girl who said there was no threat to the woman before,” said Haji Mokbel Ahmed, a tribal elder in Jalalabad. “She was shot and killed while she was doing her work.”

According to officials, Basira, a vaccinated woman, was recruited for a five-day vaccine campaign, for which she would be paid less than $ 30.

Month started Killing three women Who used to work for a television station in Jalalabad. In December, a female television and radio presenter from the same station was shut down in a similar manner. The Islamic State claimed responsibility for both incidents.

new York Times Document Such targeted killings in 2020 killed at least 136 civilians and 168 security force members, more than in almost any year of the war. So far, 2021 has not seen any kind of grief from the same kind of violence.

The Taliban are exerting pressure on the government and society, claiming domination as a form of domination, intermittently talks to settle the Afghan conflict.

Jalalabad has been one of the most difficult cities. A day after the television-worker murders, a female doctor was killed by a roadside bomb there.

Defeyres Ross Wilson, the chairman of the US in Kabul, condemned Tuesday’s killings.

“Such attacks directly confront Afghan’s dream of creating a better life for his children,” Mr. Wilson Wrote on twitter. He wrote, “My deepest condolences to the families of the victims, as we call for justice.” “Attacking vaccinators is as heartless as it is unforgivable.”

Zabihullah ghazi Contributed to reporting from Jalalabad and Faheem Abed Contributed from Kabul, Afghanistan.

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