US condemns attack targeting Afghan defense minister
‘We unequivocally condemn the bombing, and we continue to stand by our partners,’ says State Department spokesperson
The US condemned a coordinated attack Tuesday targeting Afghanistan’s defense minister and several lawmakers that reportedly left four people dead and 20 wounded.
“We're not in a position to attribute it officially just yet, but of course it does bear all the hallmarks of the spate of Taliban attacks that we have seen in recent weeks,” said State Department spokesperson Ned Price in a press briefing.
“We unequivocally condemn the bombing and we continue to stand by our partners,” he added.
A strong explosion followed by gunfire took place near acting Defense Minister Bismillah Mohammadi’s residence in the capital Kabul not far from the heavily fortified Green Zone.
Witnesses told Anadolu Agency that the blast appeared to be caused by a car bomb in the Sherpur neighborhood.
Mohammadi took to Twitter to reassure that he was well.
"Do not worry, everything is fine," he wrote in his native Dari language.
The Defense Ministry also confirmed that Mohammadi was safe.
“By the grace of God, General Bismillah Mohammadi, the Minister of National Defense, is completely healthy,” spokesman Fawad Aman said in a tweet.
Shortly after, another blast followed by smaller explosions and gunfire shook the capital, also near the Green Zone.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attacks. Clashes between Afghan forces and the Taliban have intensified across the country as foreign troops withdraw.
*Writing by Busra Nur Cakmak in AnkaraAnadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.