When armed men raged through an Afghan hospital and shot dead mothers and babies, a group of pregnant women hid in a room where one of them was about to give birth.
"The mother was in pain but tried not to make any noise," said a midwife who gave birth to the girl and severed the umbilical cord with her bare hands.
"She even put her finger in the newborn's mouth to keep her from crying," the woman told AFP on Friday. Her voice trembled three days after the attack in Kabul.
The raid at Barchi National Hospital killed 24 people, including newborns, mothers and nurses, and caused international outrage.
In the morning, 26 mothers were at the hospital when armed men claimed to be members of the Afghan security forces, the MSF charity that runs the maternity ward said.
Eleven of them were killed in the hour-long attack, including three in a delivery room with their newborns. Five were wounded.
Another 10 are housed in "safe rooms" that are common in Afghanistan and are often armored to protect inmates from gunfire or missiles.
The midwife, who spoke to AFP on condition of anonymity, also rushed to one of the safe rooms when the emergency siren went off.
When she and some of the women huddled inside, they heard gunshots as the attackers moved from room to room throughout the hospital.
Then one of the women started to give birth.
"We helped her with our bare hands, we only had toilet paper and our scarves in the room," said the midwife.
"When the baby was born, we cut the umbilical cord with our hands. We used our headscarf to wrap the baby and mother."
When the frightened women tried to remain silent, they could hear the armed men outside asking them to open the door.
"But we knew that was not the case (security forces)," she said.
Three armed men were later killed by Afghan security forces.
After the attack, 18 babies were taken to another hospital for treatment – some of them were carried from the scene by heavily armed soldiers.
No group claimed the attack, but the United States accused the Islamic group.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)