German President visits Afghanistan more than a month after deadly Kabul bombing

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier addresses the media after talks in Berlin on October 15, 2015. AFP PHOTO / TOBIAS SCHWARZ

PHOTO: AFP

KABUL: The German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier arrived in Afghanistan today, more than a month after a deadly explosion took place close to the embassy of Germany in Kabul.

According to the local media reports, Steinmeier headed to Kabul after visiting the German troops stationed in North of Afghanistan.

The German leader is expected to hold talks with the Afghan officials, including President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah during his visit to Kabul.

The visit by the German leader to Afghanistan follows one and half month after a deadly explosion rocked Kabul city, leaving more than 150 people dead and hundreds more wounded.

The German officials said last month that a team of the German experts are expected to visit Kabul soon to investigate regarding the deadly May 31st bombing near the German embassy.

A spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany quoted in the statement said “This terrible act must not go unpunished. The attack claimed the lives of over 150 people, including two Afghan employees of a security company who were guarding the German Embassy. The act must be investigated rapidly, urgently and diligently, using rule‑of‑law means.”

“That is also necessary to prevent something like this happening again. We are doing our utmost to ensure the safety of our staff,” the spokesperson said, adding that “Foreign Minister Gabriel spoke with President Ghani by telephone a few days ago and promised him our support in investigating the attack.”

The spokesperson of the Foreign Ministry of Germany also added that “The Federal Public Prosecutor General has started investigations. German experts will travel to Afghanistan as soon as possible. In order to solve this crime, there must be close and effective international cooperation with the Afghan authorities and all other countries affected.”

“We must stand up to terrorism together. It is important now that the people of Afghanistan do not allow themselves to be incited and divided by such attacks and that the Afghan Government takes united and resolute action. Germany will continue to stand firmly by its side,” he said. -KP

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