The blast, a few days into the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, was one of the deadliest to hit the capital in recent years. It serves as a warning that we can expect more such atrocities this month.
The explosion was in the diplomatic quarter near the German Embassy and the Afghan presidential palace. The streets were packed with government workers, shoppers and children going to school, and the blast appears likely to have caused a high civilian death toll.
Afghan security forces personnel are seen at the site of a car bomb attack in Kabul on May 31, 2017. (Source: Getty Images)
The bomb was concealed in a water delivery truck and detonated at 8:22 a.m. outside the offices of a cellphone company and a popular TV station, at a location about 400 yards from the German Embassy in one of the busiest parts of town, near big supermarkets and shops.
The Taliban denied responsibility for the attack in a statement. No group has yet claimed it however we know (and this blog has reported) that ISIS have been trying to gain a foothold in Aghanistan.
Wall Street Journal reporter Jessica Donati, in Kabul, giving an eye witness account of the event, said the explosion happened close to Western embassies, government institutions and the residences of high-ranking officials and their families. It's the most fortified part of the city, which can be reached only by passing through several checkpoints.
The BBC confirmed that driver Mohammed Nazir, a member of their staff in Afghanistan for four years and father of a young family, died in the blast. Four BBC journalists were injured, but their injuries are not thought to be life threatening.
At least 11 US citizens assigned to the US embassy as contractors were injured in the blast in Kabul, according to the US State Department.
German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said the attack was in the "immediate vicinity" of its embassy.
"The attack was aimed at civilians and those who are in Afghanistan to work with the people there for a better future of the country," Gabriel said. He said embassy officials had been injured but that "all employees are safe." An Afghan security officer protecting the embassy area was killed, he said.
German Foreign Affairs spokeswoman Maria Adebahr said the Kabul embassy would remain closed until further notice and that local staff were receiving medical care. A flight that was supposed to leave Berlin for Kabul on Wednesday carrying deported migrants has been canceled, the German Interior Ministry said.
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