Mursal Wahidi, 23, Sadia Sadat, 20, and Shahnaz Raufi, 20, worked for local broadcaster Enikas TV and were gunned down on their way home from work. At least 15 media workers have been killed in Afghanistan in the last six months.
Afghanistan has buried three female media workers who were killed in eastern Jalalabad city in separate attacks claimed by Daesh terror group.
Mursal Waheedi, Saadia Sadat and Shahnaz Raufi, who worked for local broadcaster Enikas TV, were shot on their way home from work, according to Afghan officials.
Their burials took place on Wednesday after prayer ceremonies, according to a provincial council member.
A fourth women wounded in the attack was admitted to hospital in a critical condition, hospitals officials.
Daesh terror group, which has a presence in Afghanistan, said its members had targeted the three female employees of a television station on Tuesday evening, according to the SITE Intelligence group.
Daesh said the three female journalists were targeted because they worked for one of the "media stations loyal to the apostate Afghan government."
READ MORE: Three women journalists shot dead in Afghanistan
Afghanistan buries three women journalists shot dead in eastern city of Jalalabad in an attack claimed by Daesh pic.twitter.com/Sx8BI1aUJP— TRT World Now (@TRTWorldNow) March 3, 2021
On a single day in Jalalabad, one of Afghanistan's most populous cities, THREE female media workers were shot dead, all three worked for the same media outlet. The same one where a colleague of their was shot dead two months ago.— Ali M Latifi (@alibomaye) March 2, 2021
WHO is protecting journalists in Afghanistan?
Ghani condemns the attack
Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani condemned the attack, which local police initially blamed on the insurgent Taliban, who denied any involvement.
"Such attacks on our innocent compatriots, especially women, contradict the teachings of Islam, Afghan culture and the spirit of peace, and make the current crisis and war difficult and long," said a statement from Ghani's office.
Afghan officials said police arrested the alleged killer of the three, identifying him as Qari Baser and insisting he was a Taliban — a claim promptly denied by Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid.
Nangarhar police chief, General Juma Gul Hemat, said Baser had used a pistol with a silencer in the attacks. He was arrested shortly after the attacks by police in Jalalabad, the provincial capital.
But Daesh claim, posted late Tuesday, contradicted the Afghan government's accusations against the Taliban.
READ MORE: Afghanistan and the false sense of safety
Violence has risen around Afghanistan and media workers and civil society members in urban areas have been targeted in recent months even as a peace process takes place in Qatar's capital of Doha.
The Afghan government and the Taliban have been holding talks to try to reach a political settlement to end decades of conflict.
But progress has slowed as the new Biden administration in Washington reviews its plans for the peace process, including whether to entirely withdraw troops by May as originally planned.
READ MORE: 12 things to know about the endless war in Afghanistan