Tags: British Embassy | Kabul

Blasts, Gunfire in Kabul After Suicide Bomber Hits UK Embassy Car

Thursday, 27 November 2014 07:49 AM

Gunfire and explosions rocked Kabul Thursday as Taliban militants attacked a central district that houses several embassies and foreign compounds, hours after a suicide bomber targeted a British embassy vehicle, killing six people.

Attacks across Kabul have increased in recent weeks as US-led NATO forces prepare to wrap up their 13-year combat mission against Taliban insurgents at the end of this year.

Fears are growing that Afghanistan could tip into a cycle of violence as the NATO military presence declines, with the national security forces already suffering high battlefield casualties.

Sporadic gunfire and grenade blasts erupted for at least 45 minutes in the Afghan capital's central district on Thursday evening, though the target was not confirmed and police were unable to give immediate details.

The attack came hours after a suicide bomber rammed his explosives-packed car into a British embassy vehicle in Kabul, killing one Briton and five Afghans.

The Taliban used a recognized Twitter account to say they were behind both attacks.

At least eight blasts have hit Kabul over the last 10 days, including attacks on foreign compounds and on a female Afghan member of parliament who was injured in a suicide bombing that targeted her car.

Afghanistan suffered its deadliest attack of 2014 on Sunday when a suicide bomber struck at a volleyball match in the eastern province of Paktika, killing 57 people.

About 12,500 foreign troops are set to stay on into 2015 after the NATO combat mission ends, to train and support the Afghan army and police.

A British security contractor and an Afghan employee of the British embassy died in the blast on Thursday, which hit their vehicle on a stretch of road notorious for suicide attacks.

At least four Afghan bystanders were also killed, and more than 30 others injured.

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond condemned the attack on the embassy vehicle as "senseless and cowardly".

"It reminds us once again of the risks our personnel take every day to keep trying to help Afghans build a better future -- and by helping them do so, protect our own security and own interests," he told a press conference in Rome.

A second British contractor with security firm G4S was injured in the bombing, which threw the embassy's 4x4 vehicle onto its side.

The roof was blown off and car parts scattered across the Jalalabad road, a main route where many fortified compounds and military facilities are located.

President Ashraf Ghani, who came to power in September, has vowed to bring peace to Afghanistan after decades of conflict, saying he is open to talks with the Taliban, who ruled Kabul from 1996 to 2001.

Ghani finally emerged as president after signing a power-sharing deal with his poll rival Abdullah Abdullah.

Both men claimed to have won fraud-tainted elections in a prolonged stand-off that caused political paralysis in Kabul and fueled worsening violence nationwide.

Britain hosts a major donor conference on Afghanistan next week, which was meant to showcase Ghani's "national unity government" and demonstrate continuing international support for the country.

© 2019 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
Newsfront
Gunfire and explosions rocked Kabul Thursday as Taliban militants attacked a central district that houses several embassies and foreign compounds, hours after a suicide bomber targeted a British embassy vehicle, killing six people.
British Embassy, Kabul
506
2014-49-27
Thursday, 27 November 2014 07:49 AM
Newsmax Media, Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved