U.S. service member killed in Kabul suicide blast, official says

The service member was killed in a car bomb near the U.S. embassy on Thursday, a U.S. official at the NATO-led Resolute Support mission said.
Image: Resolute Support (RS) forces remove a destroyed vehicle after a car bomb explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan
Resolute Support forces remove a destroyed vehicle after a car bomb explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan.Rahmat Gul / AP

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By Ahmed Mengli, Saphora Smith and Mosheh Gains

KABUL, Afghanistan — A U.S. service member was killed in a suicide blast in the Afghan capital Kabul Thursday, a U.S. official at the NATO-led Resolute Support mission said.

A car bomb rocked the Kabul neighborhood that houses the U.S. embassy on Thursday killing 10 people and injuring 42 others, according to the Afghan interior ministry. A Romanian service member was also killed in the blast, said the Resolute Support mission, which trains, advises and assists Afghan national defense and security forces.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack earlier Thursday, saying it targeted an alleged Afghan intelligence center and that 12 foreign troops and eight Afghan security officials were killed. NBC News could not immediately confirm the group's claim.

The blast comes at a particularly sensitive time in U.S.-Afghan relations as the Trump administration announced an agreement in principle with the Taliban that would end America's longest war.

It also came as a U.S. envoy is in town to brief Afghanistan's president on the draft deal in which 5,000 U.S. troops would leave Afghanistan in 135 days.

John Bass, U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, said Thursday he strongly condemned the "horrific Taliban attack."

"It's far past time for these senseless attacks to end," he wrote on Twitter.

The name of the U.S. service member killed was being withheld for 24 hours until after the notification of next of kin in accordance with U.S. Defense Department policy, the Resolute Support mission said.

Mengli reported from Kabul, Smith reported from London and Gains reported from Washington.

Mushtaq Yusufzai contributed.