At least five people have been killed after a suicide attack targeted a government-run defence ministry in Kabul, the first major attack in the Afghan capital in months.
“Five, including three military personnel and two civilians, were killed,” interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi told Reuters, adding that 12 people were wounded, five of them civilians.
The blast took place at the entrance gate of the Marshal Fahim Military Academy, Reuters News Agency reported, quoting interior ministry sources.
A witness near the scene in western Kabul confirmed the explosion.
“It was a big explosion that rocked our house. We also heard gunfire afterwards. Ambulances rushed to the area quickly,” resident Samiullah, who goes by one name, told AFP.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack, which comes after nearly three months of relative calm in the capital.
The Taliban armed group have refrained from attacking major urban centres in an effort to keep talks with the US on track, though violence in the provinces has continued, bringing frequent attacks on Afghan and US security forces
The Taliban has waged an armed rebellion since it was toppled from power in a US-led invasion in 2001.
The Trump administration seeks to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan after more than 18 years of war.
The last major attack in the capital was in November 2019, when at least 12 people were killed by a minivan packed with explosives that targeted a foreign security company’s convoy during Kabul’s morning rush hour.
Four foreign nationals were among those wounded in the attack that targeted an SUV belonging to private Canadian security company GardaWorld in a crowded neighbourhood near the interior ministry.