ATLANTA -- Two Emory University students have been identified as victims of an attack in Bangladesh that left 20 people dead.
University president James Wagner said in an email to employees that Abinta Kabir was among those killed when militants took hostages at a restaurant in the Southeast Asian nation's capital of Dhaka on Friday, the Associated Press.
Less than an hour later, the university confirmed a second student, Faraaz Hossain, was also a victim of the attack.
Faraaz, who was from Dhaka, was a 2016 graduate of Oxford College and a rising junior at the university’s Goizueta Business School.
Rifat Mursalin is a friend who remembers Faraaz as a talented student who once volunteered to help with a school project.
"I think that's a testament to the kind of person he was," said Mursalin. "He was kind and loving."
Faraaz and Kabir were childhood friends in Bangladesh. At Emory, they served together on the school's student activities committee.
The two were in Bangladesh to visit with family and friends, and agreed to meet at the cafe targeted by terrorists.
The school also posted a statement to the university's website expressing their sadness at the lost over both students.
Our thoughts and prayers go out on behalf of Faraaz and Abinta, their friends and family for strength and peace at this unspeakably sad time— Emory University (@EmoryUniversity) July 2, 2016
Kabir was a student at the school's campus in Oxford, Ga. just outside of Covington. Kabir, from Miami, was visiting family and friends in Bangladesh when she was taken hostage and killed in the Dhaka attack, according to the statement.
The Emory community mourns this tragic and senseless loss of two members of our university family. Our thoughts and prayers go out on behalf of Faraaz and Abinta and their families and friends for strength and peace at this unspeakably sad time.In the wake of this terrible loss, the university is offering support to members of our community through counseling services.
The Associated Press reported Wagner had been in touch with Abinta's mother and that she was in "unspeakable pain" over her daughter's death.
Denika Harlalka was studying abroad in London when she found out about Abinta's death through a group chat. The students were both part of the student activities committee on campus. Harlalka, who was the a year older than Abinta, called her the "sweetest and most helpful person ever."
"In such a short span of time, we had become so close and had so many inside jokes," Harlalka told 11Alive. "This is just so so terrible. I still can't digest that this has happened. I've been crying since the second I found out."
Content from the Associated Press was used in this report.