A suicide car bomber triggered a huge blast Tuesday near two armored vehicles used by U.S.-led coalition troops in Kabul, killing at least two civilians and destroying the wall of a nearby house, witnesses and officials said.
The bomber damaged the armored vehicles and wounded four people, though none of the troops was injured, said Lt. Col. David Johnson, a coalition spokesman.
At least two civilians were killed in the blast, said Gen. Ali Shah Paktiawal, director of criminal investigations for the Kabul police.
Four other people, including two Pakistani road construction workers, were injured in the blast, said Dr. Mohammad Musa, from Kabul’s Wazir Akbar Khan hospital.
U.S. and Afghan security forces raced to the scene, where broken glass and pieces of the bomber’s vehicle littered the street in a neighborhood of the capital where many foreigners live. The body of one victim lay in the street.
A day earlier, a blast ripped through a car south of the capital, killing four civilians, police said. The explosion occurred in the Musayi district of Kabul province, where a bomb had been freshly planted in the muddy, unpaved road, regional police commander Gen. Zalmai Oryakhail said.
Also Monday, a remote-controlled roadside bomb struck an Afghan army vehicle in the eastern province of Paktia, killing four soldiers and wounding two, Din Mohammad Darwish, spokesman for the provincial governor, said.
Violence claims thousands of lives
More than 6,000 people — a record number — have died this year in insurgency-related violence in Afghanistan, according to figures from Afghan and Western officials. Most of those killed are militants.
In protest of the government’s response to an attack on a traveling group of lawmakers earlier this month, dozens of lawmakers walked out of parliament Monday, led by lower house speaker Mohammad Yunus Qanuni who is also a top opposition figure.
Qanuni is a leading figure in the National Front, the largest opposition group challenging U.S.-backed President Hamid Karzai’s authority and the walkout is likely to deepen Afghanistan’s political divide.
Qanuni said the government had ignored parliament’s demand for the suspension of officials in the northern province of Baghlan where a suicide bomber attacked a visiting delegation of lawmakers on Nov. 6.
Some 77 people, including 61 students and six lawmakers were killed, and more than 100 were wounded in the blast and the subsequent shooting by panicked guards, officials said. One of the lawmakers killed was a key opposition member.