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Monday, August 10, 2015, Shraban 26, 1422 BS, Shawal 24, 1436 Hijr


Taliban bomb attack near Kabul airport kills 5
Observer Online Desk
Published :Monday, 10 August, 2015,  Time : 9:45 PM  View Count : 0
A Taliban suicide bomber has attacked a checkpoint near the entrance to the international airport in the Afghan capital Kabul, killing five people.

Local officials said at least 16 people were injured in the blast, which happened at about midday (07:30 GMT).

A Taliban spokesman said the attack targeted a convoy of foreigners but it is unclear if any died or were injured.

The incident is the latest in a series of recent deadly attacks following the announcement of a new Taliban leader.

President Ashraf Ghani is due to hold a televised press conference later on Monday to discuss the security situation.

Kabul's deputy police chief, Sayed Gul Agha Rouhani, told reporters that a suicide bomber had driven a vehicle into the first checkpoint on the road into the airport.

Images showed a large plume of smoke rising from the site of the blast and locals reported seeing ambulances approaching the scene.

Those killed were four civilians and a border police officer.

Wahidullah Mayar, a spokesman for the public health ministry, said a young child was among those injured in the explosion.

The airport was closed for several hours.

Monday's Taliban attack comes after three deadly attacks on Friday that killed at least 50 people.

A suicide bomber blew himself up near the city's police academy on Friday evening, killing about 20 recruits.

A short while later, gunmen launched an attack on Camp Integrity, a Nato base that houses US special forces near the airport.

Eleven people, including an American soldier and eight contractors, were killed in the attack on the base.

Earlier on Friday, a truck carrying explosives was detonated near an army base in the Shah Shahid area of the capital, claiming 15 lives.

The Taliban said it was behind the attack on the police academy but did not mention the two other incidents.

'Succession battle'

A top UN official said the attacks were likely to be the product of a Taliban power struggle following the death of the group's leader Mullah Omar.

"We suspect the upsurge in violence may be triggered by the succession battle within the Taliban," Nicholas Haysom, the head of the UN mission in Afghanistan, told the BBC on Saturday.

Last week, the Taliban released a video in which they showed members of the group pledging allegiance to the new leader, Mullah Akhtar Mansour.

But analysts suggest there has been infighting within the group between supporters and opponents of Mansour.

The Taliban's announcement that Mullah Omar had died led to a tentative peace process being suspended last week.

BBC/LY







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