Kawsar Qubadian

is a victim/survivor of a/an

  • Suicide Attack
  • In many incidents and cases related to the war in Afghanistan, some information might be missing due to the volatile nature of the conflict or the difficulty in gathering comprehensive information
  • The content displayed in black constitutes sensitive and confidential information.
Photo of Victim

Addtional information

  • Date of birth:

    2004

  • Village/Town of birth:

    Dashte Barchi, Mahtab Qala

  • Province of birth:

    Kabul: Kabul

  • Gender:

    Female

  • Ethnicity:

    Tajik

  • Education:

    Student

  • Date of the main incident:

    August 15, 2018

  • Place of the main incident:

    Kabul City, District 13, Kors Mawod

Incident description

ISIS suicides attacked the Mauwood Educational Academy located in Barchi, western of Kabul, and killed 43 students who were preparing for the entrance exam.

Source

AHRDO Archive

Alleged type of harm

  • Human costs: Killed

Alleged type of crimes

  • Act of genocide: Killing

Kawsar Qubadian

Incident geolocation

  • Province:

    Kabul: Kabul City, Dasht-e Barchi

  • Latitude:

    34.5168788437339

  • Longitude:

    69.1499999975304

Witness/Survivor Statement

It Would Have Been Better If the World Had Ended

Yaser Qubadian is one of the war victims' family and a brother of martyr Kawsar, who was killed by a suicide attack on Maoud Education Center on August 15, 2018. In that tragic incident, 57 students were killed, and 67 others were injured. This narrative was delivered a year after the incident at the Public Hearing of War Victims at Human Rights and Democracy Organization (HRDO) to a large group of public audiences.

Narrator: Yaser Qubadian (victim's brother)

Victim: Kawsar Qubadian

Date of incident: August 15, 2018

Venue: Kabul, Dasht-e Barchi, Mauod Education Center

In the name of the kind and merciful God.

I am Yaser Qubadian, and I am speaking and sharing my memories on behalf of the war victim families. I should add that in addition to Kawsar, I lost my father in 2006. Around ninety years ago, my family moved from Logar to Kabul, and since then, we have been living in Kabul. After completing his graduate studies at Kabul University, my grandfather worked as a colonel during Zahir and Najeeb governments. My father was born on one of his trips to Herat province. When they moved to Kabul, my father started his studies after his military service, went to Polytechnic University, and studied engineering there.

Considering the hardship of those years, my father ended up doing military duties and, consequently, wounded one of his feet and therefore limped. We were in Kabul during the civil war, in Dashti Barchi. After that, my father went to Iran and Pakistan for labor work. After the Taliban collapsed, he returned to Kabul and worked with an Australian construction company between 2003 and 2006. He was working for six months and then was returning home for a while.

I was born in 2002, and Kawsar was born in 2004. On February 13, 2006, my uncle received a phone call that afternoon indicating that his brother's car had hit a roadside bomb. I was a kid [and did not understand much], but it was very hard for my family. After my father's death, it was hard for everyone as we lost our biggest supporter. My father and Kawsar are buried in the hillsides of these Kabul mountains. The hillsides are starving and are still expecting more people but are still hungry. Probably that is their nature. After 2006, our family lives leaned toward disappointment and frustration. In 2007, my mother married my oldest uncle, and we have been living together since then. Many of our family members have lost their lives in recent years in different incidents, like my father's nephews and other relatives.

As years passed, we reached the winter of 2018. I was in the eleventh class; therefore, after Ramadan, I went to Maud Education Center to take its courses. Later, we both enrolled at the center. However, she was more talented than me and always said graveclothes or scrubs. Probably she meant the graveclothes that took her from us.

She was always asking about our father and about whether I remembered him. I was always running away to answer her questions as I was afraid, which was difficult for both of us. She had a great personality and always told my mother and me to stay strong. I had no one in this world but Kawsar. She was calling me "mustache," and since she had beautiful green eyes, I was calling her "my greenish eye." After the martyrdom of Kawsar, I do not want to be called "mustache." That word ended for me.

She was in ninth class. But she insisted that she wanted to enroll in university entrance exam preparation. She had seen Tahmina winning the first position in the public university entrance exam. She wanted to repeat the history for the year she would take the exam. I was teasing her that we would see. So we both enrolled at the center and were going there together. The night before the attack, I remember I was awake until 2 am and watching movies and entertaining programs. Then, around 8 am or 8:30, Kawsar woke me up and said, "Get up because if I am not here, none will make your bed." I do not know; probably, her subconscious was aware of what was to happen. She was saying if you do not get up now, I will not be free to make your bed anymore. She was speaking strangely. It was Wednesday, and we would have a quiz for tenth-class history on Friday. She gave the book to me, and I started asking questions. She answered most of the questions though she was at nine class.

After lunch, I told her that I would go to Kuti Sangi and I needed to buy something. I told her we would go to the center once I returned. I do not know what she was feeling. She said she would go to the center today and had some work at home. I told her that no problem but talk to mom, and if she agreed, she could stay at home. So, I went to Kuti Sangi and came back home. She said our mom disagreed and told us to go to the class. So, we got ready for the course. Usually, we would use van taxis for our transport, but that day she said let's get the bus. But the bus was jam-packed, and both of us were harassed. When we took off, I ironically told her how good the bus was. She smiled and, unlike other times,s said nothing. This was the last time I saw her alive.

As we were entering the class, I saw Attaullah and Rahila. We had met them a day before the attack. It was just a week and four days since our class started, so we still knew I did not notice where Kawsar sat. Unlike usual, when we would have physic, our math teacher came to class and said our physic teacher was busy with another class. We were assessed, and I answered the questions. I told [myself] once back home that I would be proud of myself as I answered the questions and would tease Kawsar. Our math teacher left the class, and I took my mobile phone out and was busy with it, and suddenly everywhere was blackened. I did not know what had happened. I thought probably my mobile had exploded. When I opened my eyes, I noticed that our class was significantly brightened, unlike usual. As I turned my face, I saw Dawood had fallen on the floor, and his foot was wounded. He did not talk. But he was alive. He did not speak. I looked to the other side and saw one of our classmates who was shocked like me. He stood up and rushed outside of the class.

I was left alone among all the wounded and martyred. My left ear was damaged, and I still couldn't hear properly. I can't tolerate noisy environments, and I hear that sound again when alone. I tried to hold Dawood, but I couldn't. So, I pulled Dawood from the door to the next house. I was terrified and knew that Kawsar should be more terrified.

She was always waiting for me on the road. I fluttered. I took my mobile phone to call my uncle. But I can't. As I walked, some very bad … crossed my mind. But I never thought that Kawsar might have been injured. I walked to the road and noticed that she was not there. Had the world ended, it would have been better. I rushed back to the class. I entered from the door closed to the front of the class [where girls usually sit]. The blackboard was covered with blood and partly destroyed. Wherever I looked, I saw human body parts and blood. One had no clothes and lost a body organ, but no one had come to help. I was the first person to enter the class. I was looking [for Kawsar] in the third and fourth rows. I saw Rahila. She was in the third row, and her face was covered with blood but still recognizable.

I wanted to rescue her, but there were so many corpora that I could not proceed. I saw Kawsar just in front of me. I tried to put her on my shoulder, but I couldn't. She was very heavy as Dawood. Before Eid, I remember we bought her the clothes, which are now donated to Memory Box. I put Kawsar on my shoulder to run toward the road; I saw a taxi with its boot open. I put Kawsar there and thought the Watan hospital was closed. But my uncle said they do not have the proper equipment and we should go to Emergency Hospital. So I told the taxi driver to go there.

I called my uncle on the way, but I do know what I told him. The taxi driver was terrified as well. He told me to check if she was still alive. I could not think she would be dead. I checked her blood pressure and [noticed that] she does not have. I put my hand in front of her nose and did not notice any temperature. Her eyes stared at one side, but she did not know where. Her body was hit by several pieces; one at her nose, one at her neck, and several others at her right ear. Therefore, I still can not tell what side of the class the suicide attacker exploded. I told the taxi driver that I did not know, and I was not first at the scene, so I did not know if she was alive or not. The driver was driving very fast. At Naser Khesor hospital in Gulay-e Mahtab Qala, he stopped to check if she is still alive. I told a doctor to check, and when he checked, he noticed that Kawsar was not alive anymore. I could read this from the face of the doctor. The doctor then said that the wounded had passed away.

It was tough, and I do not know how much. I called my uncle and told him that Kawsar was martyred. He told me not to go home, and I must say nothing to them if anyone called from home. Many friends called on the way to the morgue, and slowly many got the news. But still, I did not know what to say when my mom called. I did not know what to do if my family asked to give the mobile phone to Kawsar. It was a time that even holding a call was very difficult. Finally, we reached the coroner. I saw my uncle waiting for us. When he saw me, he was horrified. He hugged me, and I needed the most. He asked me if I was okay. I told her that I was okay. They took Kawsar to wash her and prepare her to be transported home.

As I was waiting out of the morgue, my mom called. She asked where I was. I told her that I am in Koti Sangi. She asked what I was doing in Koti Sangi; I told her I had some work with my uncle. Then she asked where and how Kawsar was. I told her that she was okay. She said your center was attacked. I told her it was not in our center; the attack was far from our center. She did not know yet it was our center. I immediately told her that her voicing was cutting and hung up the phone. A few minutes later, my mom called again and said to give the mobile phone to Kawsar; I told her that she was not here and that she was with my uncle to buy clothes. As she overheard people's voices in the background, she insisted on talking to Kawsar and asking where she was. I told her again that Kawsar was fine. My mom said we bought her clothes yesterday, and you are lying. I told her she did not like that and had come to change it. She hung up the phone.

Kawsar was laying down silently on the coroner's bed. My uncle and I had lost all our strength. I went to see Kawsar closely and saw Kawsar and Dawood's clothes covered in blood. Meanwhile, other relatives also arrived at the coroner. I wanted to run away from them, but they kept asking what had happened, and I had no answer to their questions. They went to see their nephew's corpus. Then our neighbor started calling and quizzing me. I told them I was in Koti Sangi at my uncle's clinic. Kawsar was with her uncle to buy clothes. They were asking why my uncle was not answering his phone. I understood that my uncle was unable to answer phone calls. I told them it was hectic, and he did not notice the calls. Other relatives also called. I said a mix of true and cover stories to them. We thought we should keep the corpus at the morgue for the night as it would be tough for all family members to mourn [alongside the corpus till morning]. However, our family told us we should take the corpus home, whatever it might take. I wish I had agreed with her and taken her somewhere else. The ambulance was ready, and they brought a covered piece with some blood spots. I could not believe inside that was my sister, Kawsar. As we were driving home, I did not know how to face the family and what I should do.

That day, you could hear the ambulance anywhere which were taking wounded or killed ones. Our house was close to the road, so these noises frightened them. They kept calling me and were just making covers. My relatives did not let me go home directly, saying my clothes were bloody, and asked me to change my clothes. I went to my auntie's home, which was close to us; I changed my clothes and ran to my home. Our alley was very crowded, unlike usual. The people had gathered in our house. They had laid Kawsar in a bed-like coffin. My mother was sitting there, not crying or shouting. But when she saw me, she told me: "I sent Kawsar with you apathy/zeal-less." This word was callous to me. Indeed, they sent Kawsar with me, and I could not protect her. But I had no answer and just felt shameful. I saw Kawsar's face turning yellow. She looked gorgeous in the coffin. She was tall, and her feet were taller than the coffin. I was shocked and did not know what to do. Then my mom hugged me, and both cried a lot. I tried to comfort her, but I could not tolerate it anymore. My uncles and aunts and then everyone else was weeping. Everyone had their questions, and I had no answer.

That night went [in crying], and everyone gathered for funeral at nine o'clock in the morning. My mom insisted that she wanted to attend the funeral and lay her to rest. I did not let her go knowing that would have been very difficult for her. My grandmom said she tolerated her father's death; she could do this as well. But the people did not let her. I shouldered the right side of the coffin, shaking. I still wonder how I could do it in that situation and why my cursed life did not end. We performed the prayer, took the corpus to the grave that was dug, and let her rest where she had been laying for the last eleven months. While laying her down, my uncle and my oldest uncle from the mother's side took her to the grave. I will not lie if I say that I laid myself, my soul, and everything else in that grave. I wish they buried me, and Kawsar was alive as she had much bigger and better dreams. With my hand, I buried myself there and put much sand that she could not get out. I could not tolerate it and secretly run to home. I hid in my room for hours. Later, there was Fateh and reciting the holy Quran, and people came. The people think they are respecting us by coming for condolence. But I am saying I wish they did not come. For us, it was all pain and nightmares.

I am alive a year after now. I miss her terribly and do not know what to do. If I am not gone by the next year or doomsday does not come, I do not see how she would tolerate it. I visit her grave every three days. I talk to her. But she says nothing. She is probably saying, but I cannot hear as I silenced her with my hand. I pretend to be strong when I am visiting her grave, my mother. She cries and asks me to sit next to her. I tell her that is enough, let's leave. I visit her grave alone. Now that I am visiting my father's grave, I feel like he is saying you could not protect your sister against your enemies, like my mother. The enemies that we might sign a peace deal with them and they might come with their land course cars, marching in front of our eyes, and we could do nothing. Since she passed, I have wished for death for myself every day.

When I attend the classes, I expect someone to follow me and await me on the road when the classes finish. When I go home, I expect someone to play with me. Visiting her grave, I tell her: "Get up, let's go home." However, this is our situation. My mother kept saying that I was a man and that an Afghan man could only live here if he is strong. She says you will experience more pain and problem; this is just the beginning. I tell her I can tolerate it; enough is enough. Thank you for your patience.