Attack on Sikh temple in Kabul a cowardly act - GulfToday

Attack on Sikh temple in Kabul a cowardly act


Afghan security personnel stand guard near the site of an attack to a Sikh Gurdwara in Kabul on Wednesday. AFP/ File

At a time when the world is fighting a global COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, which adversely impacts every human being on earth, terrorists have chosen to strike in Afghanistan and that exposes their depraved, evil mindset.

The Daesh-claimed terrorist attack on a Sikh temple in central Kabul, which killed and injured a number of civilians, is a cowardly and monstrous act.

What could be more brutal than targeting innocent worshippers offering prayers?

As Sikh worshipers gathered for morning prayers, reports indicate that Daesh militants stormed the temple, where attackers killed a guard and caused people to flee for shelter before a lengthy siege that turned dozens into hostages and left several dead, including a child.

The incident, highlighting the country’s ongoing violence, came hours before Afghanistan’s National Security Council announced that the Taliban and government officials would hold a historic meeting face-to-face over a prisoner exchange.

Adding to the agony of the victims, an explosive device disrupted Thursday’s funeral service for 25 members of Sikh minority community who had been killed by the Daesh terrorists. Fortunately, no one was reported hurt in the blast.

In July 2018, a convoy of Sikhs and Hindus was attacked by a Daesh suicide bomber as they were on their way to meet Afghan President Ashraf Ghani in Jalalabad. Nineteen people were killed in that attack.

The conflict in Afghanistan continues to be devastating for civilians.

More than 32,000 civilians in Afghanistan have been killed in the past decade, as per UN figures. More children were killed last year — 927 — than in any other over the past decade by all actors.

To add to Afghanistan’s woes, Washington slashed the amount of aid to the country this week after President Ghani and his rival Abdullah Abdullah, who has also proclaimed himself president, failed to resolve their standoff.

Following a visit to Kabul, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the US would immediately cut $1 billion and was prepared to pull another $1 billion in 2021.

As Miguel Ángel Moratinos, High Representative for the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), pointed out, attacks targeting sacred sites and worshippers are intolerable and have to stop.

All governments, as well as others, need to support the implementation of the UN Plan of Action to Safeguard Religious Sites, to guarantee the sanctity of worship places and the safety of worshipers.

An entire generation of children has witnessed nothing but bloody violence. At a time when they should be studying in schools and playing in the gardens, Afghan children have been bearing the brunt of senseless violence with no solution in sight.

There is a strong desire among Afghan people for sustainable peace and that should be respected. All sides should wholeheartedly embrace a peace process that ensures the long-term prosperity and stability of the country.

The UAE Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has correctly underscored the UAE’s utter condemnation of such criminal acts and full rejection of all forms of violence and terrorism aimed at undermining security and stability in contravention of religious and human values and principles.

Attacks against civilians are totally deplorable and those who carry out such crimes must be held accountable.

This unacceptable loss of life underlines the importance of multilateral efforts to promote a comprehensive peace agreement that will shred the ability of terror groups to operate in Afghanistan.


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