Taliban Attack in Afghan Capital Kabul Kills at least Nine

The Taliban claimed responsibility on Monday for a suicide attack in a busy area near the Afghan defence ministry in Kabul

KABUL, Sept 5 – A Taliban suicide attack on a busy area near the defense ministry in the Afghan capital Kabul on Monday killed at least nine people and wounded more than 30, less than two weeks after a deadly attack on the city’s American University.

Defence ministry spokesman Mohammad Radmanesh said there had been two blasts in quick succession in a crowded area of the city near government buildings as well as a market and a main intersection.

Army and police personnel as well as civilians rushing to help victims of the first blast were caught in the second explosion, triggered when a suicide bomber blew himself up.

The Taliban, who have stepped up their campaign against the Western-backed government in recent weeks, following a brief lull after the death of their former leader, Mullah Akhtar Mansour, claimed responsibility for the attack.

President Ashraf Ghani condemned the attack, which came less than two weeks after gunmen attacked the American University in Kabul, killing 13 people.

Government officials have been preparing for a conference in Brussels next month at which foreign donors, concerned about the ability of the Afghan security forces to withstand Taliban violence, are expected to pledge continuing support over coming years.

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