Huge Afghan truck bomb kills 8, injures more than 100

  • 07/08/2015
The force of the explosion reduced the front of nearby buildings to rubble (Reuters)
The force of the explosion reduced the front of nearby buildings to rubble (Reuters)

A huge truck bomb in Kabul has killed eight people and wounded more than 100 others.

No group immediately claimed responsibility for the attack in the Afghan capital, which comes as the Taliban step up their northern summer offensive despite a bitter power transition within the militant movement.

Women and children were among the casualties of the powerful blast that struck Shah Shaheed, a neighbourhood in east Kabul, but rattled homes across the city, damaging buildings and shattering windows.

The force of the explosion left an enormous crater in the road, around 10 metres deep, and reduced the front of nearby buildings to rubble.

"The death toll has reached eight, and the wounded stands at 128," Kabul police spokesman Ebadullah Karimi said.

Kabul police chief General Abdul Rahman Rahimi said officials were searching for anyone trapped under the mangled concrete debris.

"The killed and wounded include women and children, and labourers of a nearby marble stone company are among the victims. The attack was intended to cause mass murder," he said.

Health ministry spokesman Wahidullah Mayar said the number of wounded could run into the hundreds, with most suffering injuries from flying glass.

It was not clear whether the intended target was an Afghan National Army base close to Shah Shaheed, a largely middle-class civilian residential area with no major foreign presence, but Rahimi said no military casualties were reported.

The wounded were trickling into city hospitals, Mayar said, with reports emerging of blood shortages and urgent appeals for donors circulating on social media.