A man reacts at the site of a lethal blast in Kabul, Afghanistan, May 31, 2017. (Reuters/Omar Sobhani)
A man reacts at the site of a lethal blast in Kabul, Afghanistan, May 31, 2017. (Reuters/Omar Sobhani)

At least two media workers killed, nine injured in Kabul bombing

New York, May 31, 2017–At least two media workers were killed and nine others were injured in a massive bomb attack in central Kabul, Afghanistan that also partially destroyed the office of a television station, according to media reports.

A powerful blast shook Kabul’s diplomatic quarter as people went to work, killing at least 80 people and injuring at least 350 others, according to local reports. Mohammed Nazir, a driver for the BBC, was among those killed, the BBC reported. Four of his colleagues in the car were also injured, the BBC said. Aziz Navin, an employee of the independent Afghan broadcaster TOLO TV, was also killed as he went to work, according to TOLO News. Two TOLONews employees were injured as well, Ilias Alami, Afghanistan operations manager at the Journalist Safety Committee, told CPJ. The office of the Afghan broadcaster 1TV was partially destroyed in the blast, injuring three employees, Alami told CPJ.

“The deaths of at least two media workers are reminders of the quiet bravery of the many people who work behind the scenes to make news reporting possible,” CPJ Deputy Executive Director Robert Mahoney said. “There are no discernible frontlines for journalists covering this war. Even the morning commute to work can prove fatal.”

Afghan security officials believe a water tanker filled with explosives caused the blast, according to TOLO News. No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, according to media reports.

The Islamic State group in Afghanistan on May 17 attacked the Jalalabad office of state broadcaster National Radio Television Afghanistan, killing at least six people and injuring 18 others, according to media reports.