Last week I wrote about the terrible attack on Dasht-e-Barchi’s maternity ward. Gunmen had stormed that hospital and killed scores of innocent civilians, mothers in labor, others waiting for delivery, and newborn children less than an hour old.

Three women in the delivery room with their unborn babies were among 11 mothers killed in an attack on a maternity hospital in Kabul last week.

Among the victims were:

Jamila, an elderly woman, was in the hospital with her five grandchildren for their vaccinations when the attackers stormed the hospital. Jamila was wounded in the attack, but one of her grandchildren is missing. Jamila was hit five bullets.

Baby Hadyah now two weeks old, lost her mother Shayma during the attack. Shayma was a tailor by profession and the only breadwinner of her family after her husband Said Qurban lost both of his legs as a result of another terror attack. A physically disabled Said Qurban – who was left with their 3 daughters and 2 sons all aged between 7 and 14 – decided to give baby Hadyah to a close family.

In the aftermath of the attack,  the horrific image below was shared all over social media. A lifeless mother with her newborn on her chest. That woman was 24-year-old Sarah. Sarah was a psychology graduate of Bamiyan University. She braved the perilous 18-hour-long journey from her native town of Daykondi to Kabul in order to deliver her child in the medically safer facilities of the Dasht-e-Barchi hospital.

A committee built of family members and community volunteers has been put together in order to ensure that the surviving newborns are properly handed over to their next of kin or legal guardians in order to avoid any child to fall into prying hands of child traffickers.

The details of this attack are appalling, but they need to be heard. We need to ensure that areas where vulnerable minorities, such as the Hazaras reside, have the proper medical equipment in order to avoid another mother having to journey 18 hours on a bus across a dangerous rocky road to the capital, just to deliver their child.