At least five people were killed after a suicide attack in Kabul, the first major attack in the Afghan capital in months, targeted a government-run ministry of defence.
“Five, including three military personnel and two civilians, were killed,” interior ministry spokesman Nasrat Rahimi told Reuters, adding that 12 people were wounded in which five of them were civilians.
The blast occured at the Marshal Fahim Military Academy’s entrance gate, said the Reuters News Agency, interior ministry sources also said.
A witness in west Kabul near the scene reported the blast.
“It was a big explosion that rocked our house. We also heard gunfire afterwards. Ambulances rushed to the area quickly,” Samiullah, a resident, told AFP.
No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack which occurs in the capital after almost three months of peace.
The Taliban armed group have stopped targeting major urban centers in hopes of keeping on track talks with the United States, while violence continued in the provinces, with frequent attacks on Afghan and US security forces.
The Taliban has led an armed rebellion since a U.S .- led invasion in 2001 ousted it from power.
After more than 18 years of war the Trump administration wants to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan.
The last major attack in the capital was in November 2019, when a minivan packed with explosives killed at least 12 people that targeted the convoy of a foreign security company amidst the morning rush hour in Kabul.
According to media sources, the attack on a SUV belonging to private Canadian security company GardaWorld in a crowded neighborhood near the Interior Ministry involved four foreign nationals among those wounded.
35 militants were also killed while four others detained during an operation in Balkh and eastern Khost province on Monday.
Meanwhile, 17 prisoners and security personnel were also rescued during an operation in northern Kunduz province’s Khan Abad district on Feb 10.