“Police said they had made no arrests and did not know who was responsible.” Those wacky, anonymous “miscreants” must be at it again. “Girls collapse after suspected poison attack on Afghan school,” by Ben Farmer in Kabul for the Telegraph, April 27:
Dozens of girls collapsed and needed hospital attention after a suspected airborne chemical attack on a school in northern Afghanistan.
Five teachers and 40 pupils were overcome by fumes during a school ceremony in the capital of northern Parwan province.
Afghan officials said they were awaiting the results of blood tests to determine what had happened, but there were unconfirmed local reports a bottle had been thrown into the playground beforehand.
Dr Abdullah Fahim, a spokesman for the public health ministry, said: “For the time being, it seems to be airborne poisoning. But it’s not confirmed yet what the actual reason is.”
One teacher at Sadiqi Padshah School in Charikar, who did not wish to be named, said the whole school had been standing in the playground listening to staff speeches when students began to collapse.
“We didn’t know what was happening, all the children just went down and we took them to hospital.” Victims were treated for severe headaches and streaming eyes after the attack on Sunday morning, 40 miles north of Kabul, but the provincial governor said all had made a full recovery.
Police said they had made no arrests and did not know who was responsible. While the growth of the Afghan school system is seen as one of the successes of the past seven years, Taliban-led insurgents opposed to the central government or girls’ education continue to attack schools and teachers.
In 2008, there were 292 attacks on schools, with 92 people killed and 169 injured.
Last year in the southern city of Kandahar, men on motorbikes threw acid in the faces of girls walking to school.
However, Parwan, a Tajik-dominated province immediately north of Kabul, is considered relatively safe, with little Taliban activity.
Apparently not any more.