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Suicide bomber targets Kabul Bank branch

شعار Al Jazeera Al Jazeera 29/08/2017
The blast occurred on a busy Kabul street lined with shops and banks [Omar Sobhani/Reuters] © Provided by Al Jazeera The blast occurred on a busy Kabul street lined with shops and banks [Omar Sobhani/Reuters]

A suicide bomber has blown himself up at a bank close in the Afghan capital, killing at least four people and wounding several others, officials say.

The bomber hit the entrance to a Kabul Bank branch close to the US embassy and the city's main diplomatic quarter, Najib Danish, an interior ministry spokesman, said on Tuesday.

It was not immediately clear how many casualties had been caused by the explosion.

Danish said at least four people had been killed and three wounded while the public health ministry said separately that one dead and eight wounded had been brought to city hospitals.

The blast occurred on a street lined with shops and banks at a time when many officials were collecting their salaries before the Muslim Eid holiday at the end of the week.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

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A spokesman for the Taliban said he was checking reports.

Taliban fighters, who are at the peak of their summer fighting season, have launched several deadly assaults around the country in recent weeks.

Earlier this month, Taliban pledged to turn Afghanistan into a "graveyard" for foreign forces after US President Donald Trump committed American troops indefinitely to the war there.

Tuesday's blast was the latest in a long series of suicide attacks in Kabul, where 209 civilians were killed and 777 injured in the first half of the year alone, according to figures by the UN.

President Ashraf Ghani's government has started tightening security around the centre of the city, where many of the most deadly attacks have taken place.

On May 3, a powerful blast targeting a foreign forces convoy near the US embassy and NATO headquarters killed at least eight people and wounded 28 during morning rush hour.

Later in the month a massive truck bomb targeted Kabul's diplomatic quarter, home to the presidential palace and a host of foreign embassies, killing about 150 and wounding around 400 people, mostly civilians.

On June 3, seven people were killed after suicide bombers attacked the funeral of a protester who was killed the day before during a demonstration against insecurity in Kabul.

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