KABUL: A Taliban suicide attack targeting a Turkish diplomatic vehicle killed two people in Kabul Thursday, highlighting the fragile security situation as the Afghan government presses for peace talks with the militants.
The blast came shortly after 8:00 am, not far from the Iranian embassy. Police said the dead included a Turkish national and an Afghan passer-by.
Kabul police spokesman Hashmat Stanikzai gave details of the attack and death toll, saying the bomber was driving a Toyota Corolla when he targeted the Turkish vehicle.
Abdul Rahman Rahimi, Kabul police chief, confirmed the death toll in the blast, which the Taliban claimed.
“A suicide bomber blew himself up targeting a foreign convoy in central Kabul, a number of foreigners were killed in the attack,” the militants said in a message.
Television footage showed two black armoured vehicles bearing Turkish diplomatic plates and at least one wounded person being carried from a car.
It is the first known attack on a Turkish target in the Afghan capital.
The last similar suicide car attack in Kabul took place near the airport in January.
Insurgent attacks in the capital have been intermittent in recent months as winter has closed in and access for militants who are believed to be based in neighboring Pakistan is limited.
The Afghan government hopes to open a dialogue with the Taliban’s leadership in the near future, which could lead to peace talks in the coming year or two, officials and diplomats have said.
In the meantime, the insurgents are expected to intensify their war, in order to enter any talks from a position of strength.