Kabul: A bombing in the Afghan capital Wednesday targetted the convoy of the country’s first vice-president. The bombing killed 10 people and wounded more than a dozen others. Among them were several of Vice-President’s Amrullah Saleh’s bodyguards informed the Afghan Interior Ministry. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the bombing and the Taliban quickly denied they were behind the attack. Amrullah Saleh suffered minor burns in the blast.
Saleh is also Afghanistan’s former intelligence chief. He said in his first television appearance immediately after the attack that he was fine. He informed that he had sustained only slight burns. He appeared in the TV footage with bandages on one hand. “Me and my younger son who was also with me are fine,” Saleh said.
“I have slight burns on my face and hand from the wave of the blast. I don’t have exact details right now, but I apologise to those who suffered casualties and those who lost their property in the attack,” Saleh added.
The vice-president’s spokesman, Razwan Murad, called the attack a ‘vicious terrorist attempt’ on Saleh’s life. The roads in the vicinity of the bombing were closed off.
The Interior Ministry said the bomb went off as Saleh’s convoy was passing through a section of this city with shops that sell gas cylinders. The blast ignited a fire that set ablaze a number of the shops.
The explosion left behind a scene of destruction. At least 10 shops were smoldering in the aftermath of the explosion. It also shattered windows of dozens of nearby homes, some with doors hanging off their hinges. Cars were wrecked and debris was scattered around.
Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahed was quick to deny insurgents were involved in any way. “Today’s explosion in Kabul has nothing to do with the Mujahedeen of the Islamic Emirate,” he said. The Taliban call themselves as ‘Mujahedeen of the Islamic Emirate’.