A baby which was shot twice in the leg during an attack on a Kabul maternity unit which killed 24 people including mothers, nurses and newborns has survived.
Three gunmen, suspected to be members of terror group ISIS, entered the building in the Afghan capital dressed as police officers before throwing grenades and opening fire with rifles on Tuesday.
At least two of those shot dead were newborn babies and 15 men, women and children were injured. The attackers were later shot dead.
But one of the newborns, who was born just three hours before the attack, survived after doctors operated on her shattered right leg, the Times reported.
A baby which was shot twice in the leg during an attack on a Kabul maternity unit which killed 24 people including mothers, nurses and newborns has survived
Three gunmen entered the building in the Afghan capital dressed as police officers before throwing grenades and opening fire with rifles on Tuesday. Pictured: A surviving baby is carried out of the wrecked building by a soldier
She was among several of the surviving babies which have been taken to be cared for at the Indira Gandhi Children’s Hospital in Kabul.
Her mother, Nazia, died in the attack and the newborn was given the same name by her father Rafiullah after he had laid his wife to rest.
Dr Noor ul-Haq Yousafzai, a director at the hospital, told the Times: ‘We set Nazia’s fracture, so she will be able to walk when she grows up.’
‘But to see a newborn baby, just three hours old, shot twice. Everyone is shocked. This is inhuman.’
It comes after an Afghan mother volunteered to breastfeed 20 of the surviving newborns after their mothers were killed and injured in the attack on the Doctors Without Borders maternity unit.
At least two of those shot dead were newborn babies and 15 men, women and children were injured. The attackers were later shot dead
But one of the newborns, who was born just three hours before the attack, survived after doctors operated on her ‘shattered’ right leg
Feroza Younis Omar, who is the mother of a 14-month-old child and works at the country’s Economic Ministry, is helping the recovering newborns at Ataturk Hospital in Kabul.
She said: ‘All of us have been damaged by criminals who are destroying humanity in Afghanistan. I am one of those.’
After storming the maternity unity, the gunmen then got into a shootout with security forces which ended several hours later when all three were shot dead.
A lengthy clearance operation saw heavily armed Afghan security forces carry babies from the scene – at least one wrapped in a blood-soaked blanket.
Khadija, one of the few survivors of the attack, revealed that she had been forced to wait to hug her newborn son for the first time as the armed group stormed the unit just hours after she gave birth.
It comes after Afghan mother Feroza Younis Omar (pictured) volunteered to breastfeed 20 of the surviving newborns after their mothers were killed and injured in the attack on the Doctors Without Borders maternity unit
The mother(pictured), who works at the country’s Economic Ministry, has a 14-month-old child and is breastfeeding babies who were in the maternity unit targeted by gunmen on Tuesday
She said the intensive care ward had been full of smoke and bullets but both she and her son survived, with Khadija herself having to hide under a table to avoid the bullets.
No group has so far claimed responsibility for the attack, but President Ashraf Ghani blamed both the Taliban and the Islamic State group but singled out the former and ordered the military to switch tactics from ‘defensive to offensive’ when dealing with the insurgents.
The Taliban has responded by warning it is ‘fully prepared’ to counter Afghan forces.
Following the attack, at least twenty newborns were left without caretakers and were transferred to the Ataturk Hospital in Kabul.
Pictured, a nurse cares for a newborn baby who survived the attack. At least twenty newborns were left without caretakers. Some were transferred to the Ataturk Hospital in Kabul while others are being cared for at the city’s Indira Gandhi’s Children’s Hospital
An Afghan mother feeds a newborn baby at the Ataturk Hospital in Kabul
On Wednesday, the families of around 15 babies, whose mothers were killed, were awaiting news on what will happen to the children, according to the New York Times.
The hospital’s head doctor Jannat Gul Askarzada told reporters: ‘Twenty babies have been brought to Ataturk Hospital. One of them was sent to the children’s health hospital for orthopedic treatment.’
As the news hit the headlines in Afghanistan, many people took to Twitter to praise Feroza Younis Omar for her efforts and a hashtag bearing her name went viral.
‘Masoom Musakhail’ tweeted: ‘That is the Humanity to feed the baby of martyred Mothers.’
On Wednesday, the families of around 15 babies, whose mothers were killed, were awaiting news on what will happen to the children. Pictured, a rescued mother and her newborn baby receive medical attention
Meanwhile, Senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment ‘Karim Sadjadpour’ called the mother ‘a true hero’.
Others have now stepped forward to lead by her example and assist families involved in the attack.
Aziza Kermani, from Kabul, told local media: ‘I am ready to adopt one of the babies who have lost their mother or whose families do not have the financial ability to raise them.’
Meanwhile, another resident of the capital who only gave her name as Fatima told a local outlet that she came to the hospital to help the children.