BBC reporter killed in eastern Afghanistan: Broadcaster

AFP Chief Photographer Shah Marai killed in Afghanistan

At least 30 people were killed as two suicide bombers of ISIS exploded themselves in quick succession in the Afghan capital on Monday.

Prior to Monday's blasts, the deadliest attack on the media in recent years was in 2016, when seven employees of popular TV channel Tolo were killed in a Taliban suicide bombing.

The first blast happened at around at 8 a.m. local time in the Shashdarak area of the city, where the United States embassy and Afghan government buildings are located, prompting journalists to rush to the scene.

Shortly afterwards, a second explosion tore through a group of reporters who had gathered at the site of the first incident outside the headquarters of the Ministry of Urban Development. Killing journalists is an attack on freedom of expression.

The first attack was carried out by a suicide bomber riding a motorcycle, according to multiple reports.

ISISI claimed responsibility for Kabul bombings where AFP's chief photographer Shah Marai was among the journalists killed. The group strongly condemned all attacks against journalists. It also included disgruntled Afghan Taliban fighters opposed to their leadership's attempts to rein in violence and pursue peace efforts. He was taken by locals to hospital, where he died of his injuries.

Survivors of the attacks in Kabul recounted scenes of mayhem.

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Jawed Ghulam Sakhi, a 28-year-old a taxi driver said "when the explosion happened, everywhere was covered with dust and fire, it was so horrific scene" with bodies and body parts "thrown about on the street and the pavement". I have five and they spend their time cooped up inside the house.

He recalled being one of the few reporters to cover the bombing of Kabul ahead of the U.S. invasion.

Policemen help Afghan journalists, victims of a second blast, in Kabul, Afghanistan Monday.

The spokesman further said that the government and people of Pakistan express their support and solidarity with their Afghan brethren in this hour of grief.

Police spokesman Kabul Hashmat Stanikzai told AFP, "The bomber disguised himself as a journalist and detonated himself among the crowd", he said.

"My thoughts and those of U.S. Forces-Afghanistan are with the families and friends of our fallen and wounded service members", Gen. John Nicholson, commander of U.S. Forces-Afghanistan, said in the release. Shashdarak district is also home to the Afghan defense ministry and a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation compound, the BBC said.

Elsewhere, at least 11 school children were killed when an assailant blew off an explosives-laden vehicle near a mosque in the Daman district of Kandahar Province. Last week, six people, including two Afghan soldiers, were killed when a auto bomb exploded in Afghanistan's Helmand province. The children had gathered around the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation convoy for fun when the bomber struck, said Abdul Rahim Ayubi, a lawmaker from Kandahar.

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