Kabul erupts in Taliban-claimed suicide attacks, 16 dead

Smoke rises from an Afghan police district headquarters building after a suicide car bombing in Kabul on March 1,
Smoke rises from an Afghan police district headquarters building after a suicide car bombing in Kabul on March 1,

Kabul: Explosions and gunfire echoed through Kabul after near-simultaneous Taliban assaults on two security compounds yesterday, as the insurgents intensify attacks even before the start of their annual spring offensive.

An Afghan health official says that at least 16 people have been killed in twin Taliban suicide bombings and a shootout that followed one of the attacks in the country's capital, Kabul.

The near-simultaneous attacks struck the Afghan capital around noon on Wednesday. First, a suicide car bomber targeted a police station in western Kabul.

The explosion was followed by a gunbattle between police and several attackers. In the second attack, a bomber on foot detonated his explosives outside offices of the intelligence service in eastern Kabul.

Wahid Mujro, the public health ministry spokesman, says 15 people were killed in the police compound and 43 were wounded.

He says one person was killed and another was wounded in the attack in eastern Kabul.
The Taliban claimed both assaults, with spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid calling them "martyrdom attacks" in a Twitter message.

The health ministry said the wounded, some of them in critical condition, had been rushed to hospitals. "More casualties are expected as the ambulances are on their way," said ministry spokesman Majroh.

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