At least 14 people were killed and 145 injured on Wednesday in a Taliban claimed suicide car bombing in Kabul, Deputy Interior Minister, Khoshal Sadat said.
According to Sadat, the bomb hit outside a police station in the western Qala-e Shada neighbourhood.
Images shared on social media showed a huge crater left by the blast along with destroyed buildings and police cars.
Sadat said the bombing took place in a densely populated residential area packed with shops and houses, injuring 92 civilians.
Zabihullah Mujahid, the Taliban’s spokesman, said a recruitment centre for the enemy was targeted, the military school adjacent to the police station.
Mujahid said the attack was the 16th to take place in Kabul since the beginning of the year, killing at least 113 people and injuring 732 others.
“Wednesday’s bombing has raised fresh questions among Afghans about the Taliban’s willingness to pursue peace as the eighth round of talks between the U.S and Taliban continues in the Qatari capital of Doha.
“U.S Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation, Zalmay Khalilzad, is expected to return to Doha from India on Wednesday evening, sources informed about the talks said. Both sides were optimistic in recent days that an agreement will be finalised.
“The U.S and Taliban made excellent progress in the recent round of talks that resumed over the weekend in the Qatari capital of Doha,” Khalilzad said.
Khalilzad said in a series of tweets that while he was leaving for pre-scheduled meetings in India, teams on both sides would continue to discuss technical details.
He said both sides were to also discuss steps and mechanisms required for a successful implementation of the four-part agreement.
According to Mujahid, a special committee had been assigned to work on the technical issues.
The U.S and the Taliban had been meeting since last summer with the hope of finding a peaceful solution to the Afghan conflict that had been raging for nearly two decades.
Meanwhile, Washington above all, wanted Taliban to guarantee that Afghanistan would not become a safe haven for terrorists, while the Taliban were focusing on ensuring the withdrawal of all U.S-led foreign forces from Afghanistan.
According to the U.S, an agreement should also include: a ceasefire and direct talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban.