Large car bomb kills 9 in Afghan capital

Rahim Faiez
·2-min read

A car bomb blast that rocked Afghanistan's capital has killed at least nine people, according to the Afghan Interior Ministry.

Interior Minister Masoud Andarabi told reporters at the site of the bombing that the Sunday morning attack wounded around 20 others, including a member of parliament, Khan Mohammad Wardak.

Andarabi said the MP was in "good condition".

The interior minister added that the casualty toll could rise further.

The attack happened while the lawmaker's convey was passing through an intersection in Kabul's Khoshal Khan neighbourhood.

The blast set alight surrounding civilian vehicles, as well as damaging nearby buildings and shops.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack.

In a statement condemning the attack, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said the Taliban should stop violence against civilians and accept a ceasefire, to facilitate the current peace process.

Ghani's statement did not directly lay blame on the Taliban for the bombing or offer evidence that the group was responsible for it.

The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for multiple attacks in the capital of Kabul in recent months, including on educational institutions that killed 50 people, most of them students.

IS also claimed responsibility for Saturday's rocket attacks at the major US base in Afghanistan.

There were no casualties in that assault, according to NATO and provincial officials.

In another report from the southern Helmand province, the Afghan Defense Ministry in a statement confirmed that a suicide car bomber tried to attack an army checkpoint, but was identified and shot by soldiers.

Two soldiers were slightly wounded in the attempted assault in Nawa district, the ministry said.

No one claimed responsibility for the attack in Helmand.

Violence in Afghanistan has spiked even as the Taliban and Afghan government negotiators hold talks in Qatar, trying to hammer out a peace deal that could put an end to decades of war.