Huge blast leaves at least 95 dead and 158 wounded after bomb hidden in ambulance explodes in Kabul


A powerful bomb blast has left at least 95 dead and 158 injured after an ambulance packed with explosives detonated near a police station.

The blast at shortly before 1pm occurred in Kabul, Afghanistan, in a crowded area that contains many administrative buildings including police headquarters.

The Public Health Ministry has confirmed that at least 95 people were killed and 158 wounded following the terror attack.

The Taliban has claimed responsibility for the blast, reports 1 TV.

According to reports, a driver in an ambulance passed through a checkpoint after he told police he was carrying a patient.

But police grew suspicious at a second checkpoint, where the bomb exploded.

a group of people walking down a street: Credits: AFP © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: AFP a group of people posing for the camera: Credits: REUTERS © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: REUTERS

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the blast a week after it claimed an attack on the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul in which more than 20 people were killed.

“It is a massacre,” said Dejan Panic, coordinator in Afghanistan for the Italian aid group Emergency, which runs a nearby trauma hospital.

In a message on Twitter, the group said more than 50 wounded had been brought in to that hospital alone.

Mirwais Yasini, a member of parliament who was nearby when the explosion occurred, said the ambulance approached the checkpoint, close to an office of the High Peace Council and several foreign embassies, and blew up.

Buildings hundreds of metres (yards) away were shaken by the force of the explosion, which left torn bodies strewn on the street nearby amid rubble and debris.

a screenshot of a video game: Credits: REUTERS © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc Credits: REUTERS People helped walking-wounded away as ambulances with sirens wailing inched their way through the traffic-clogged streets of the city centre.

The latest attack will add pressure on President Ashraf Ghani and his U.S. allies, who have expressed growing confidence that a new more aggressive military strategy has succeeded in driving Taliban insurgents back from major provincial centres.

The United States has stepped up its assistance to Afghan security forces and increased its air strikes against the Taliban and other militant groups, aiming to break a stalemate and force the insurgents to the negotiating table.

However, the Taliban have dismissed suggestions that they have been weakened by the new strategy and the latest attacks have demonstrated that their capacity to mount deadly, high-profile attacks remains undiminished.

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