Taliban suicide attacker kills four
A Taliban attack, involving at least one suicide bomber, targeted a foreigners' compound in Kabul today, killing four people in the latest fatal blast to hit the Afghan capital.
The attack started when a small truck packed with explosives rammed the gate of the compound housing foreigners on the city's eastern outskirts soon after sunrise, according to Interior Ministry spokesman Seqid Sediqqi.
Once the gate was destroyed, gunmen attempted to breach the compound, said his deputy, Najib Danesh.
Two Afghan security guards were among the four killed, said the ministry. Three civilians were wounded in the attack, which involved three assailants, including the truck's driver.
The area where today's attack happened has several compounds housing foreign contracting and service companies, as well as international military bases, so the precise target was not immediately clear. The Afghan government's intelligence agency also has a branch nearby.
Nato's International Security Assistance Force said none of its personnel were hurt in the attack.
Afghan First Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum visited the blast site, along with members of the Afghan army's rapid reaction force.
After passing through the bombed-out gate, he said the bombing "is the work of intelligence services" acting in collusion with the attackers.
There has been speculation over recent high-profile attacks in Kabul that insurgent groups have infiltrated security and intelligence agencies to get access to sites inside the heavily-guarded capital.
The attack sent a plume of smoke into the sky and was heard across Kabul. Gunfire was heard just before the blast, from security guards firing on the truck as it approached the gate. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.
In the past week, suicide bombers have targeted the chief of police - an attack also claimed by the Taliban - and a prominent female politician, both of whom survived the deadly assaults.
Also today, in eastern Khost province, a woman died when the van she was travelling in hit a roadside bomb, said Mubariz Mohammad Zadran, spokesman for the provincial governor. Another 13 people, including children, were wounded.