At 8:30 a.m. this morning, in the diplomatic quarter of Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul, a suicide bomber killed at least 90 and wounded 400. The bomb was detonated in a large truck that had been designed to empty septic tanks. It is unclear whether the intended target was the German Embassy, which was approximately 400 yards away and was damaged from the blast, or the Afghan presidential palace:
“The blast was so huge that it dug a big crater as deep as four meters,” said General Hassan Shah Frogh, Kabul’s police chief.
Windows shattered a mile away from the city center. “There was a big tremble, and then we heard a massive explosion,” said Ramin Sangar, a cameraman at a television channel near the site of the explosion. “All the windows are broken. Our studios collapsed.”
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid confirmed that the terrorist organization was not behind the attack; he also condemned the high toll in civilian casualties. The majority of those killed or wounded were civilians commuting during the morning rush hour, including nearly a dozen U.S. citizens, all of whom were U.S. contract personnel.
President Ashraf Ghani said in a statement that he “strongly condemns the cowardly attack in the holy month of Ramadan targeting innocent civilians in their daily life” (Ramadan commenced on May 26).