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Terrorist attack on Kabul hotel 'a moral outrage' – UN envoy for Afghanistan

Condemning a terrorist attack on a hotel in the Afghan capital, Kabul, the head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in the country (UNAMA) has said that the attack may amount to a war crime.

“There is simply no justification for this egregious attack, which is specifically prohibited by International Humanitarian Law and may amount to a war crime,” said Tadamichi Yamamoto, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Afghanistan and the head of UNAMA, in a statement.

At least six civilians, including one woman were killed and at least three others injured in the attack which took place on Saturday night, local time.

The Intercontinental Hotel was scheduled to hold a technology conference on 21 January, organized by Afghanistan's Ministry of Communications and Information Technology. Also at the hotel, guests had gathered for a wedding ceremony.

According to UNAMA, in claiming responsibility, the Taliban stated that five attackers entered the hotel to target Afghan officials and foreign nationals.

“It is a moral outrage that the Taliban entered the hotel with the intention of killing civilians,” said Mr. Yamamoto, underscoring that all parties to the armed conflict in Afghanistan “are bound to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law, at all times.”

In the statement, he also expressed his condolences to the loved ones of those killed and wished a full and speedy recovery to those injured.