Sunday May 02, 2021
Pakistan strongly condemns the "heinous terrorist attack" which took place on Friday in Pul-e-Alam, the capital city of Afghanistan's Logar province, the Foreign Office said on Sunday.
The statement noted that "scores of innocent lives were lost and many others were injured" in the attack.
On behalf of the people of Pakistan and the government, it offered heartfelt condolences to the bereaved families and prayers for the quick recovery of the injured.
The statement reiterated Pakistan's condemnation "in all forms and manifestations".
"At this moment of grief, Pakistan stands by Afghan brethren in their struggle against the scourge of terrorism," said the Foreign Office, in its statement.
"Pakistan will continue to support Afghanistan on its path to peace, progress and prosperity," it added.
A huge car bomb blast killed at least 27 people and injured dozens more in Afghanistan's eastern Logar province on Friday evening, with high school students among the casualties, local officials said.
The car packed with explosives detonated in Logar's capital of Pul-e Alam near the house of the former head of the provincial council, Didar Lawang, the spokesman for Logar's governor, said.
The house also operated as a guesthouse and the blast had struck just as guests were breaking their Ramadan fast, according to the head of Logar's provincial council, Hasibullah Stanekzai, who told Reuters 27 people had been killed and dozens more wounded.
He said among the casualties were high school students who had been staying at the house, having travelled to the capital to sit their university entrance exam, as well as pro-government militia members who were staying there while waiting for air transport to another distinct.
It was not immediately clear who was behind the blast. A spokesman for the Taliban said in response to Reuters' questions that they were looking into the matter.
Under the Trump administration's February 2020 deal with the Taliban, foreign forces were to withdraw from the country by May 1 while the Taliban held off on attacking foreign troops and bases. But President Biden announced last month after reviewing the situation that forces would stay in the country for months beyond May, withdrawing by September 11.
Interior ministry spokesman Tariq Arian said 21 people had been killed and 91 wounded and that a rescue and recovery operation was continuing.
A provincial health official said just over 60 injured people had been taken to hospital and many students were among the victims.
The European Union's delegation to Afghanistan also condemned the attack.
"In the holy month of Ramadan, horrible news on a car bomb in Pul-e-Alam, Logar province, killing and injuring innocent civilians, including students....this is a tragedy for the whole country," it said on Twitter.