Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 June 2019

Blast reported near home of former Afghan president's brother

Earlier bomb blasts in Kabul killed at least one person and wounded 17

Afghan journalists inspect a vehicle at the site of a triple bomb explosion in downtown Kabul, Afghanistan, on Sunday. EPA
Afghan journalists inspect a vehicle at the site of a triple bomb explosion in downtown Kabul, Afghanistan, on Sunday. EPA

A bomb detonated near the Kabul home of a brother of former president Hamid Karzai on Sunday evening, hours after three other blasts in the Afghan capital killed at least one person and injured more than a dozen others.

Shah Wali Karzai was at home with the defence minister Asadullah Khalid and Kandahar police chief Tadin Khan when the blast occurred in the upmarket Aino Mina suburb, according to a tweet posted by Ali Adili, a researcher with the Afghanistan Analysts Network.

Other tweets suggested that none of the men were injured, but there was no immediate official confirmation of the incident.

The earlier explosions, which wounded 17 people in total, included a sticky bomb attached to a bus carrying university students. The other two were roadside bombs that wounded seven people.

Among the wounded was an Afghan journalist who appeared to have been live-streaming the aftermath of the first explosion when a second bomb went off.

The events started with the detonation of the sticky bomb – a growing menace in Kabul, where insurgents and criminals slap magnetic bombs on the underside of vehicles.

Several houses and shops around the blast sites were damaged, and security forces blocked all roads leading to the site.

No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attacks, but both Taliban and ISIS militants are active in the capital and have staged attacks in Kabul.

In a separate attack late on Saturday in eastern Ghazni province, a Taliban suicide bomber detonated a stolen Humvee packed with explosives inside a police reserve unit compound, killing at least seven police personnel, said Nasr Ahmad Faqeri, head of Ghazni's provincial council.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid took responsibility for the attack in Ghazni.

Last year, nine journalists including AFP Kabul's chief photographer Shah Marai were killed in a secondary explosion after rushing to the scene of an initial blast.

Even though the Taliban and the US are set to begin a new round of peace talks in Doha this month, violence across Afghanistan continues unabated, with civilians often bearing the brunt of the bloodshed.

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had proposed a nationwide ceasefire at the start of Ramadan early last month, but the Taliban rejected the offer.

Last year, the Taliban observed a three-day ceasefire over Eid and many Afghans – exhausted by decades of war and violence – had pinned their hopes on another truce this year.

Taliban head Haibatullah Akhundzada said Saturday there would be no "cold water" poured on the insurgents' military efforts.

Updated: June 3, 2019 08:48 AM

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