Earlier this month a terror attack was initiated at the maternity ward of Dasht-e-Barchi hospital in Kabul, Afghanistan.
Gunmen came and shot women in the unit. Three women were murdered in the delivery room before birthing their children, according to The Guardian.
“They went through the rooms, shooting women in their beds. It was methodical,” said Frederic Bonnot, Médecins Sans Frontières head of programs in Afghanistan.
There has been no group identified so far such as the Taliban and Islamic State that seemed to be behind this horrific attack.
“While these pregnant women and babies were in one of life’s most vulnerable states, an unknown number of assailants stormed the maternity hospital and unleashed a series of explosions and gunfire that lasted for hours,” said Doctors Without Borders.
The mothers and newborn babies that were victims of this mass violence were indeed vulnerable as this attack was not anticipated.
Attacks and mass violence taking place in Afghanistan receive less news and media coverage in comparison to topics and conflicts around the world.
“A BBC investigation last year found that, on average, 74 men, women and children were killed every day throughout the month of August,” said Flora Drury from BBC.
It shouldn’t be how high the number of deaths are for it to receive news recognition, but rather how the innocent civilians of Afghanistan are victims of war, conflict and terror attacks.
Safety and security must be ensured for these mothers, as no mother should give birth to their child amid bullets and danger.
Afghanistan deserves more international attention and for the media to stop dehumanizing them.
“We mourn the loss of several patients, and we have indications that at least one colleague was also killed,” said Doctors Without Borders. “For now, with so much uncertainty, every effort is being made by our medical team to follow up on the newborns in the maternity hospital to ensure the best possible care for our patients and for those injured, to provide psychological care to affected staff, and to provide necessary support to those bereaved.”
On the same day, a suicide blast killed 40 people at a funeral in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, according to NDTV.com.
The next day, a Taliban led terrorist attack killed five people according to AlJazeera.
During this pandemic, we may feel like our hands are tied to help, but there are many ways to support Afghanistan. Raising awareness of the attack through social media platforms is one way to spread knowledge and show what terror commits to innocent humans. Sharing data from Doctors Without Borders keeps people updated on the status of the hospital and people affected as well.
A GoFundMe page was opened for the hospital attack, titled “Charity for Maternity Ward Shooting in Afghanistan,” with a goal of $50,000.
It is time to stop treating the murders of innocent Afghans as minor and speak up now in the age of social media activism.